Definition of “suffer” - English Dictionary

“suffer” in British English

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sufferverb

uk /ˈsʌf.ər/ us /ˈsʌf.ɚ/

suffer verb (FEEL PAIN)

B1 [ I ] to experience physical or mental pain:

I think he suffered a lot when his wife left him.
She suffers in the winter when it's cold and her joints get stiff.
She's been suffering from (= been ill with) cancer for two years.
Johnny suffers from (= is often ill with) asthma.
Do you suffer from (= do you have) any allergies?
If you're not happy with it, you should complain. Don't just suffer in silence (= without saying anything).

More examples

  • It's some comfort to know that he died instantly and didn't suffer.
  • We cannot stand idly by while these people suffer.
  • If he is suffering, he certainly shows no outward sign of it.
  • She'd suffered terribly over the years but it hadn't made her bitter.
  • It's terrible to see the children suffer.

suffer verb (EXPERIENCE)

B2 [ I or T ] to experience or show the effects of something bad:

The Democrats suffered a crushing defeat in the last election.
25 policemen suffered minor injuries during the riots.
The city suffered another blow last month with the closure of the local car factory.
If you go and eat three helpings of dessert, you'll just have to suffer the consequences!
[ + obj + -ing verb ] I had to suffer her father moaning for half an hour on the phone last night!
When you're working such long hours, it's inevitable that your marriage will start to suffer.
Like a lot of his films, it suffers from being too long.

More examples

  • Pregnant women often suffer from iron deficiency.
  • No one should have to suffer such degrading treatment.
  • Do you suffer from migraine?
  • She was admitted to hospital to the hospital suffering from shock.
  • He has helped patients suffering from anxiety, depression, and eating disorders.

(Definition of “suffer” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

“suffer” in American English

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sufferverb

us /ˈsʌf·ər/

suffer verb (EXPERIENCE)

[ I/T ] to experience or show the effects of something bad:

[ T ] About 50,000 bicyclists suffer serious head injuries each year.
[ T ] Block’s own farm has suffered large financial setbacks.
[ I ] If you and your husband have jobs in different cities, your marriage is likely to suffer.

suffer verb (FEEL PAIN)

[ I ] to experience physical or mental pain:

She suffers in cold weather when her joints get stiff.
He suffers from migraine headaches.

(Definition of “suffer” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)