follow Dictionary.com

Stories We Like: A Guide to the Comma

suffocate

[suhf-uh-keyt] /ˈsʌf əˌkeɪt/
verb (used with object), suffocated, suffocating.
1.
to kill by preventing the access of air to the blood through the lungs or analogous organs, as gills; strangle.
2.
to impede the respiration of.
3.
to discomfort by a lack of fresh or cool air.
4.
to overcome or extinguish; suppress.
verb (used without object), suffocated, suffocating.
5.
to become suffocated; stifle; smother.
6.
to be uncomfortable due to a lack of fresh or cool air.
Origin
1520-1530
1520-30; < Latin suffōcātus (past participle of suffōcāre to choke, stifle), equivalent to suf- suf- + -fōc- (combining form of fauc-, stem of faucēs throat) + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
suffocatingly, adverb
suffocation, noun
suffocative, adjective
unsuffocated, adjective
unsuffocative, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for suffocate
  • Later they find their family and friends trapped, soon to suffocate to death.
British Dictionary definitions for suffocate

suffocate

/ˈsʌfəˌkeɪt/
verb
1.
to kill or be killed by the deprivation of oxygen, as by obstruction of the air passage or inhalation of noxious gases
2.
to block the air passages or have the air passages blocked
3.
to feel or cause to feel discomfort from heat and lack of air
Derived Forms
suffocating, adjective
suffocatingly, adverb
suffocation, noun
suffocative, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin suffōcāre, from sub- + faucēs throat
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
suffocate in Medicine

suffocate suf·fo·cate (sŭf'ə-kāt')
v. suf·fo·cat·ed, suf·fo·cat·ing, suf·fo·cates

  1. To impair the respiration of; asphyxiate.

  2. To suffer from lack of oxygen; to be unable to breathe.


suf'fo·ca'tion n.
suf'fo·ca'tive adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for suffocate

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for suffocate

17
19
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with suffocate