Definitions

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

  • noun Sustenance or maintenance, as with money.
  • noun Something that sustains; a support.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Support; preservation from falling or sinking.
  • noun Maintenance: especially, support of life; sustenance.

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

  • noun The act of sustaining, or the state of being sustained; preservation from falling; support; sustenance; maintenance.
  • noun (Physiol.) The aggregate of the functions by which a living organism is maintained in a normal condition of weight and growth.
  • noun (Eccl.) a fund of a religious body for support of its ministers, chapels, etc..

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

  • noun The act, or the result of sustaining; sustainment.
  • noun The aggregate of the functions by which a living organism is maintained in a normal condition of weight and growth.

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

  • noun the act of sustaining life by food or providing a means of subsistence

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French, from Latin sustentātiō, sustentātiōn-, from sustentātus, past participle of sustentāre, to support; see sustentacular.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

First attested in 1382: from the Old French sustentacion, from the Latin sustentātio, from sustentō; compare the Italian sostentazione, the Occitan sustentacion, the Portuguese sustentação, and the Spanish sustentación.

Examples

  • No missionary or "sustentation" support should be given by any cooperating denomination to a pastor in an overchurched community nor to a "circuit" involving interdenominational competition until after an adjustment is made either by reorganization of the circuit or an agreement has been reached by the missionary and administrative bodies of the respective denominations concerned as to an allocation of such missionary responsibility.

    Church Cooperation in Community Life

  • There are two funds: one subscribed expressly for the building of churches, the other limited to the "sustentation" of incumbents.

    Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 55, No. 340, February, 1844

  • The fundamental question that had to be answered in that book was the question of the "sustentation" of the new Church.

    The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 10

  • This area requires maintenance costing over $200 million a day and the surreptitious cost of the car culture totals nearly $500 billion a year in the U.S. alone, much of that going to the sustentation of a military presence in the Persian Gulf.

    Driving Mister Barack

  • A man must have air, or he will suffocate; he must have water, or he will perish of thirst; he must have access to the soil, for upon it grow those things which nature intended for the sustentation of the physical man, and without which he cannot live.

    Black and White

  • The thing is reduced to a cruel mockery when stores and granaries are over-gorged, while people clamor in vain for clothing and food, and drop dead within reach of these prime elements of warmth and sustentation.

    Black and White

  • Further, seeing it is not enough to the sustentation of a

    Leviathan

  • A man must have air, or he will suffocate; he must have water, or he will perish of thirst; he must have access to the soil, for upon it grow those things which nature intended for the sustentation of the physical man, and without which he cannot live.

    Black and White

  • A man must have air, or he will suffocate; he must have water, or he will perish of thirst; he must have access to the soil, for upon it grow those things which nature intended for the sustentation of the physical man, and without which he cannot live.

    Black and White

  • The thing is reduced to a cruel mockery when stores and granaries are over-gorged, while people clamor in vain for clothing and food, and drop dead within reach of these prime elements of warmth and sustentation.

    Black and White

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