Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To take or have a part or share; participate.
  • intransitive verb To take or be given part or portion.
  • intransitive verb To share some of the properties of something else.
  • intransitive verb Archaic To take or have a part in; share in.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To take or have a part, portion, or share in common with others; participate; share: used absolutely, or followed by of or in (also, rarely, by with) before the object shared: as, to partake of the bounties of Providence; to partake of refreshments.
  • To share in some degree the nature, character, functions, or peculiarities (of some other person or thing): followed by of.
  • To take sides; espouse the cause of another; make common cause.
  • Synonyms Partake, Participate, Share. There is not always a distinction among these words. Share is the most familiar, participate the least so. Partake is the most natural to apply to that which pleases or concerns chiefly the actor: as, to partake of food; to partake of the qualities of one's ancestors. Participate and share especially include other persons: as, to share another's pleasures, or participate in his griefs or joys. Participate may imply the most intimate community of possession or feeling, as is suggested by its being followed by in, not of. Share may have a direct object, or be followed by in.
  • To have a part in; share.
  • To admit to participation; invite or permit to share.
  • To distribute; communicate.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To partake of; to have a part or share in; to share.
  • transitive verb obsolete To admit to a share; to cause to participate; to give a part to.
  • transitive verb obsolete To distribute; to communicate.
  • intransitive verb To take a part, portion, lot, or share, in common with others; to have a share or part; to participate; to share.
  • intransitive verb To have something of the properties, character, or office; -- usually followed by of.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive, formal To take part in an activity; to participate
  • verb intransitive To share (of)

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb consume
  • verb have some of the qualities or attributes of something
  • verb have, give, or receive a share of

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Back-formation from partaker, one who partakes, from Middle English part-taker (translation of Latin particeps, participant).]

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Examples

  • If someone chooses to partake, that is their choice and the consequences are known.

    Read These Now Because SOMETHING Will Destroy You 2008

  • If someone chooses to partake, that is their choice and the consequences are known.

    Read These Now Because SOMETHING Will Destroy You 2008

  • Quaenam beneficia in hac that are effectually called partake of in this life? vita consequuntur ii qui sunt vocati efficaciter?

    The Creeds of the Evangelical Protestant Churches. 1889

  • Other ... being not at all Pipe My favorite way to partake is to say "No thank you".

    Answerbag: Latest Questions in Question Categories 2009

  • The following bill of 1763, found among the Schuyler papers, gives a hint of the manner in which the service was conducted, and perhaps explains why the women scarcely ever attended the funeral in the "dead room," as it was called, but remained in an upper room, where they could at least hear what was said, if they could not "partake" of the occasion.

    Woman's Life in Colonial Days Carl Holliday

  • For as His presence, which conveyed to us those great and unutterable blessings, condemned the more them that received it not: so also the Mysteries become provisions [157] of greater punishment to such as partake unworthily.

    NPNF1-12. Saint Chrysostom: Homilies on the Epistles of Paul to the Corinthians Editor 1889

  • Such years are in many men's lives marked by the projection, or even by the partial accomplishment, of literary undertakings on a large scale, and more especially of such as partake of an imitative character.

    Chaucer Adolphus William Ward 1880

  • God is a severe animadverter upon such as partake without such a preparation, 84.

    Sermons Preached Upon Several Occasions. Vol. II. 1634-1716 1823

  • I have never in my life associated "partake" with any kind of drug use.

    Wired Campus 2010

  • Brown, 1893, pp. 162-164.] [395] {362} [To "partake" this or that is an obsolete construction, but rests on the authority of Dryden and other writers of the period.

    The Works of Lord Byron. Vol. 4 George Gordon Byron Byron 1806

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