Pronunciation Verb

feed (feeds, present participle feeding; past and past participle fed)

  1. (ditransitive) To give (someone or something) food to eat.
    Feed the dog every evening.
    • Bible, Epistle to the Romans 12:20
      If thine enemy hunger, feed him.
  2. (intransitive) To eat (usually of animals).
    Spiders feed on gnats and flies.
    • 1879, R[ichard] J[efferies], chapter 1, in The Amateur Poacher, London: Smith, Elder, & Co., […], OCLC 752825175 ↗:
      But then I had the [massive] flintlock by me for protection. ¶ […] The linen-press and a chest on the top of it formed, however, a very good gun-carriage; and, thus mounted, aim could be taken out of the window at the old mare feeding in the meadow below by the brook, and a 'bead' could be drawn upon Molly, the dairymaid, kissing the fogger behind the hedge, […].
  3. (transitive) To give (someone or something) to (someone or something else) as food.
    Feed the fish to the dolphins.
    • 2012 December 25 (airdate), Steven Moffat, The Snowmen (Doctor Who)
      DR SIMEON: I said I'd feed you. I didn't say who to.
  4. (transitive) To give to a machine to be processed.
    Feed the paper gently into the document shredder.
    We got interesting results after feeding the computer with the new data.
  5. (figurative) To satisfy, gratify, or minister to (a sense, taste, desire, etc.).
    • 1596-97, William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice, Act I, Scene iii:
      If I can catch him once upon the hip, / I will feed fat the ancient grudge I bear him.
    • feeding him with the hope of liberty
  6. To supply with something.
    Springs feed ponds with water.
  7. To graze; to cause to be cropped by feeding, as herbage by cattle.
    If grain is too forward in autumn, feed it with sheep.
    • Once in three years feed your mowing lands.
  8. (sports, transitive) To pass to.
  9. (phonology, of a phonological rule) To create the environment where another phonological rule can apply; to be applied before another rule.
    Nasalization feeds raising.
  10. (syntax, of a syntactic rule) To create the syntactic environment in which another syntactic rule is applied; to be applied before another syntactic rule.
Synonyms Translations Translations Translations Noun


  1. (uncountable) Food given to (especially herbivorous) animals.
    They sell feed, riding helmets, and everything else for horses.
  2. Something supplied continuously.
    a satellite feed
  3. The part of a machine that supplies the material to be operated upon.
    the paper feed of a printer
  4. The forward motion of the material fed into a machine.
  5. (countable) A gathering to eat, especially in quantity
    They held a crab feed on the beach.
  6. (Internet) Encapsulated online content, such as news or a blog, that can be subscribed to.
    I've subscribed to the feeds of my favourite blogs, so I can find out when new posts are added without having to visit those sites.
Translations Translations Translations Translations
  • Italian: feed
  • Portuguese: feed
  • Russian: новостна́я ле́нта
  • Spanish: feed
  1. Simple past tense and past participle of fee

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