[suhf-er-ing, suhf-ring]

1300–50; Middle English; see suffer, -ing1

sufferingly, adverb
unsuffering, adjective

1. agony, torment, torture; pain, distress. Unabridged


verb (used without object)
to undergo or feel pain or distress: The patient is still suffering.
to sustain injury, disadvantage, or loss: One's health suffers from overwork. The business suffers from lack of capital.
to undergo a penalty, as of death: The traitor was made to suffer on the gallows.
to endure pain, disability, death, etc., patiently or willingly.
verb (used with object)
to undergo, be subjected to, or endure (pain, distress, injury, loss, or anything unpleasant): to suffer the pangs of conscience.
to undergo or experience (any action, process, or condition): to suffer change.
to tolerate or allow: I do not suffer fools gladly.

1200–50; Middle English suff(e)ren < Latin sufferre, equivalent to suf- suf- + ferre to bear1; compare Old French sofrir < Vulgar Latin *sufferīre

sufferable, adjective
sufferableness, noun
sufferably, adverb
sufferer, noun
nonsufferable, adjective
nonsufferableness, noun
nonsufferably, adverb
outsuffer, verb (used with object)
presuffer, verb
unsufferable, adjective
unsufferableness, noun
unsufferably, adverb

5. sustain. 7. stomach, stand, abide. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
suffer (ˈsʌfə)
1.  to undergo or be subjected to (pain, punishment, etc)
2.  (tr) to undergo or experience (anything): to suffer a change of management
3.  (intr) to be set at a disadvantage: this author suffers in translation
4.  to be prepared to endure (pain, death, etc): he suffers for the cause of freedom
5.  archaic (tr) to permit (someone to do something): suffer the little children to come unto me
6.  suffer from
 a.  to be ill with, esp recurrently
 b.  to be given to: he suffers from a tendency to exaggerate
[C13: from Old French soffrir, from Latin sufferre, from sub- + ferre to bear]
usage  It is better to avoid using the words suffer and sufferer in relation to chronic illness or disability. They may be considered demeaning and disempowering. Suitable alternative are have, experience, be diagnosed with

suffering (ˈsʌfərɪŋ, ˈsʌfrɪŋ)
1.  the pain, misery, or loss experienced by a person who suffers
2.  the state or an instance of enduring pain, etc

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

early 13c., "to undergo, endure" (pain, death, punishment, judgment, grief), from Anglo-Fr. suffrir, from O.Fr. sufrir, from V.L. *sufferire, variant of L. sufferre "to bear, undergo, endure, carry or put under," from sub "up, under" + ferre "to carry" (see infer). Replaced
O.E. þolian, þrowian. Meaning "to tolerate, allow" is recorded from late 13c.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
In addition, there is no legal threshold for how much pain and suffering an
  animal can be exposed to in experiments.
For amputees suffering from phantom pain, a computer-generated cure might soon
  be at hand.
Media companies are suffering intense pain-and it is starting to seem
  worryingly permanent.
Students may be enjoying high self-esteem, but college teachers seem to be
  suffering from a lack of self-confidence.
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