life: Meaning and Definition of
Pronunciation: (līf), [key]
— n., pl. adj. lives
- the condition that distinguishes organisms from inorganic objects and dead organisms, being manifested by growth through metabolism, reproduction, and the power of adaptation to environment through changes originating internally.
- the sum of the distinguishing phenomena of organisms, esp. metabolism, growth, reproduction, and adaptation to environment.
- the animate existence or period of animate existence of an individual: to risk one's life; a short life and a merry one.
- a corresponding state, existence, or principle of existence conceived of as belonging to the soul: eternal life.
- the general or universal condition of human existence: Too bad, but life is like that.
- any specified period of animate existence: a man in middle life.
- the period of existence, activity, or effectiveness of something inanimate, as a machine, lease, or play: The life of the car may be ten years.
- a living being: Several lives were lost.
- living things collectively: the hope of discovering life on other planets; insect life.
- a particular aspect of existence: He enjoys an active physical life.
- the course of existence or sum of experiences and actions that constitute a person's existence: His business has been his entire life.
- a biography: a newly published life of Willa Cather.
- animation; liveliness; spirit: a speech full of life.
- resilience; elasticity.
- the force that makes or keeps something alive; the vivifying or quickening principle: The life of the treaty has been an increase of mutual understanding and respect.
- a mode or manner of existence, as in the world of affairs or society: So far her business life has not overlapped her social life.
- the period or extent of authority, popularity, approval, etc.: the life of the committee; the life of a bestseller.
- a prison sentence covering the remaining portion of the offender's animate existence: The judge gave him life.
- anything or anyone considered to be as precious as life: She was his life.
- a person or thing that enlivens: the life of the party.
- effervescence or sparkle, as of wines.
- pungency or strong, sharp flavor, as of substances when fresh or in good condition.
- nature or any of the forms of nature as the model or subject of a work of art: drawn from life.
- another opportunity given to a batter to bat because of a misplay by a fielder.
- (in English pool) one of a limited number of shots allowed a player: Each pool player has three lives at the beginning of the game.
- actually; indeed: There he stood, as large as life.
- The evening passed, but somehow the party never came to life.
- to recover consciousness.
- to become animated and vigorous:The evening passed, but somehow the party never came to life.
- to appear lifelike:The characters of the novel came to life on the screen.
- with desperate effort, energy, or speed: We ran for dear life, with the dogs at our heels.
- as hard as one tries; even with the utmost effort: He can't understand it for the life of him.
- absolutely not; under no circumstances; by no means: Will I stand for such a thing? Not on your life!
- to risk death knowingly: We were warned that we were taking our lives in our hands by going through that swampy area.
- in perfect imitation; exactly: The portrait characterized him to the life.
- for or lasting a lifetime; lifelong: a life membership in a club; life imprisonment.
- of or pertaining to animate existence: the life force; life functions.
- working from nature or using a living model: a life drawing; a life class.
- life (Thesaurus)