follow Dictionary.com

Stories We Like: Novels For Language Lovers

perish

[per-ish] /ˈpɛr ɪʃ/
verb (used without object)
1.
to die or be destroyed through violence, privation, etc.:
to perish in an earthquake.
2.
to pass away or disappear:
an age of elegance that has forever perished.
3.
to suffer destruction or ruin:
His valuable paintings perished in the fire.
4.
to suffer spiritual death:
Save us, lest we perish.
Idioms
5.
perish the thought, may it never happen: used facetiously or as an afterthought of foreboding.
Origin
1200-1250
1200-50; Middle English perissen < Old French periss-, long stem of perir < Latin perīre to perish, literally, go through, spend fully, equivalent to per- per- + īre to go
Related forms
perishless, adjective
perishment, noun
unperished, adjective
Synonyms
1. expire. See die1 . 2. wither, shrivel, rot, molder, vanish.
Antonyms
2. appear.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for perish the thought

perish

/ˈpɛrɪʃ/
verb (intransitive)
1.
to be destroyed or die, esp in an untimely way
2.
(transitive sometimes followed by with or from) to cause to suffer: we were perished with cold
3.
to rot: leather perishes if exposed to bad weather
4.
perish the thought!, may it never be or happen thus
noun
5.
(Austral, informal) do a perish, to die or come near to dying of thirst or starvation
Word Origin
C13: from Old French périr, from Latin perīre to pass away entirely, from per- (away) + īre to go
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
Word Origin and History for perish the thought

perish

v.

mid-13c., from periss- present participle stem of Old French perir "perish, be lost, be shipwrecked" (12c.), from Latin perire "to be lost, perish," literally "to go through," from per- "through, completely, to destruction" (see per) + ire "to go" (see ion). Related: Perished; perishing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with perish the thought

perish the thought

Don't even think of it. This expression is used as a wish that what was just mentioned will never happen. For example, He's going to give another speech? Perish the thought! This phrase appeared in Handel's oratorio Joshua (1748; text by Thomas Morell): “It never shall be said that our allies in vain implor'd our aid. Perish the thought!” Also see god forbid

perish

In addition to the idiom beginning with perish also see: publish or perish
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for perish

Many English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for perish

11
11
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with perish the thought