Definition of suckle in English:


Line breaks: suckle
Pronunciation: /ˈsʌk(ə)l


[with object]
1Feed (a baby or young animal) from the breast or teat: a mother pig was suckling a huge litter
More example sentences
  • Two Madonna-and-childs, reversed out in a stark negative: the bounteous white woman, bereft of her own baby, suckling the child of a dying African.
  • Informal wet-nursing ranges from the occasional nursing of another woman's child to a private arrangement to suckle a baby whose mother is ailing or who has died.
  • But virtually all begging street urchins, maimed men, mothers suckling infants and other ragged destitutes are Tibetan, not Chinese.
breastfeed, feed, nurse
archaic give suck to
1.1 [no object] (Of a baby or young animal) feed by sucking the breast or teat: the infant’s biological need to suckle
More example sentences
  • ‘It's impossible to forgive,’ she said, her infant baby suckling at her breast.
  • Images of Charity personified often show a child suckling at each of her breasts.
  • The strong influence of Italian neo-realism is further subverted by such outlandish sights as a boy suckling at a cow's udder and Pedro hurling an egg directly at the camera.


late Middle English: probably a back-formation from suckling.

Definition of suckle in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day retroflex
Pronunciation: ˈrɛtrə(ʊ)flɛks
turned backwards