Date: 1100-1200
Origin: Probably from Old Norse deyja


1 verb
Related topics: Technology
die1 S1 W1 past tense and past participle died, present participle dying, third person singular dies [intransitive]

become dead

to stop living and become dead:
He died in 1985 at the age of 76.
Her father died suddenly in an accident when she was only ten.
die of/from
The animals died of starvation in the snow.
patients who are dying from cancer
She died peacefully in her sleep at the age of 98.
die for something (=be killed while fighting to defend something)
Do you believe in anything enough to die for it?
die young/happy/poor
She died young, at the age of 27.
The bullet went straight through his head, and he died instantly.
to your dying day/until the day you die (=until you die)
It must remain a secret until the day I die.
somebody's dying breath/wish (=someone's last breath or wish)
It was his dying wish that the house be opened to the public.
die a hero/martyr/rich man etc
My uncle died a hero.
die a natural/violent/agonizing death
Did she die a natural death (=did she die naturally, or did someone kill her?)?


to disappear or stop existing:
Our love will never die.
The family name will die with him (=disappear when he dies).
He's one of a dying breed (=a type of person that is no longer common).


informalT to stop working [= break down]:
The engine spluttered and died.
die on somebody (=stop working while they are using it)
The mower just died on me.

be dying for something/to do something

spoken to want something very much:
I'm dying for a cup of tea.
She was dying to ask where he'd got it.
I'm dying to see what it is.

be dying of hunger/thirst/boredom

spoken to be very hungry, thirsty, bored etc:
Do you fancy a cup of tea? I'm dying of thirst.

I nearly died/I could have died

spoken used to say that you felt very surprised or embarrassed:
I nearly died when I saw it was my ex-husband!

die of embarrassment/shame

to be very embarrassed or ashamed:
The room was such a mess, I just died of embarrassment.

I'd rather die

spoken used to say very strongly that you do not want to do something:
I'd rather die than work for him!

in the dying minutes/seconds/moments (of something)

during the last minutes or seconds before the end of something:
United scored an equaliser in the dying minutes of the game.

old habits/traditions/customs die hard

used to say that it takes a long time to change to a new way of doing something

never say die

spoken used to encourage someone to continue doing something that is difficult

die a/the death

informal to gradually fail or be forgotten:
The rumour gradually died a death.

die laughing

spoken to laugh a lot:
We nearly died laughing when he told us.

to die for

informal extremely nice, attractive, or desirable:
She had hair to die for.
a ceremony for someone who has died: funeral a ceremony at which someone who has died is buried or burned
when someone's body is put into the ground
when someone's body is burned
a large car that takes the body to the funeral
a box in which someone is buried or carried to the funeral
the place where someone is buried
/cemetery an area where dead people are buried
someone who arranges funerals
the mourners
the people at a funeral
die death, widow, widower, orphan, bereaved, will2, obituary

die away

phrasal verb
if sound, wind, or light dies away, it becomes gradually weaker until you cannot hear, feel, or see it:
Her voice died away as she saw the look on David's face.
She waited until the footsteps had died away.

die back

phrasal verb
HBP if a plant dies back, it dies above the ground but remains alive at its roots

die down

phrasal verb
if something dies down, it becomes less strong, active, or violent:
Don't worry, the gossip will soon die down.
when the excitement had died down

die off

phrasal verb
if a group of people or animals die off, they die one by one until there are no more of them

die out

phrasal verb
to disappear or stop existing completely:
The wild population of koalas is in danger of dying out.
There will be outbreaks of rain, gradually dying out later.

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