Definition of drink in English:

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Pronunciation: /drɪŋk/

verb (past drank /draŋk/; past participle drunk /drʌŋk/)

[with object]
1Take (a liquid) into the mouth and swallow: we sat by the fire, drinking our tea [no object]: he drank thirstily
More example sentences
  • I can distinctly remember wondering how anyone could bring themselves to drink this disgusting liquid.
  • He nodded wordlessly and then thirstily drank the water she offered.
  • He added that his greatest concern was about how they would be able to persuade Johnny to drink liquids after his procedure.
swallow, gulp down, quaff, swill, guzzle, sup;
imbibe, partake of, sip, consume, take;
drain, toss off
informal swig, down, knock back, put away, sink, kill, slug, inhale, wet one's whistle
British informal neck
North American informal scarf (down/up), snarf (down/up), chug
rare ingurgitate
1.1 [no object] Consume or be in the habit of consuming alcohol: she doesn’t drink or smoke (as noun drinking) Les was ordered to cut down his drinking
More example sentences
  • We can save a small fortune by simply dropping bad habits like smoking, drinking and gambling.
  • It plans to target a core group of 15 homeless people with chronic alcohol problems who drink on the city's streets.
  • Ryan said he spent much of the time drinking and had consumed eight or nine pints and a number of shorts.
drink alcohol, take alcohol, tipple, indulge;
be a serious/heavy/hard drinker, be an alcoholic, binge-drink;
carouse, go drinking, predrink
informal take a drop, hit the bottle, take to the bottle, booze, knock a few back, have a few, have one over the eight, tank up, get tanked up, drink like a fish, go on a binge/bender
British informal bevvy
North American informal bend one's elbow, lush
Australian/New Zealand informal grog up
archaic wassail, tope
1.2 [no object] (drink up) Quickly consume the rest of a drink.
Example sentences
  • In Ireland there is a tradition of having to drink up quickly before leaving the pub at closing time.
  • One of the things that fuels the increase in alcohol-related violence is people drinking up when they know they are close to closing time.
  • She says the policeman appeared at the pub at 12.10 am but the pub had stopped serving customers by midnight and people were in the process of drinking up.
1.3 informal (Of a plant or a porous substance) absorb (moisture): the seedlings apparently drink much more water than we had realized
More example sentences
  • The wicking action of the soil draws water into the pot as the plants drink it up.
  • You may need to add more water as the beans drink it up.
  • Check the water level daily and keep topped up - the tree will drink a lot especially in a warm room.
1.4 [no object] (Of wine) have a specified flavour or character when drunk: this wine is really drinking beautifully
More example sentences
  • The wine drinks very well now but it could be kept in the cellar for several more years.
  • This wine should drink beautifully for at least a decade.
  • Crisply dry, with almost mineral overtones, this elegant Champagne is drinking well now but will cellar comfortably for 5 - 8 years.
2 (drink something in) Watch or listen to something with eager pleasure or interest: she strolled to the window to drink in the view
More example sentences
  • From here one could drink in the scenery of the even higher, treeless peaks.
  • We tried to savour the day and drink in the atmosphere, but it all went by too quickly
absorb, assimilate, digest, ingest, take in, be absorbed in, be immersed in, be rapt in, be lost in, be fascinated by, pay close attention to


1A liquid that can be swallowed as refreshment or nourishment: fizzy drinks [mass noun]: a table covered with food and drink
More example sentences
  • Visitors will also be able to relax with a refreshing drink and snack in the dining room.
  • It is important to avoid constantly snacking on sugary foods or sipping fizzy drinks.
  • However, if you enjoy the taste of herbs as a garnish to your food, why not enjoy their refreshing and health-giving properties in refreshing summer drinks.
beverage, drinkable/potable liquid, liquid refreshment, thirst quencher;
dram, bracer, nightcap, nip, tot, spot;
North American  eye-opener;
Scottish & Irish  deoch an doris
British informal cuppa, pint
rare potation, libation
1.1A quantity of liquid swallowed at one go: he had a drink of water
More example sentences
  • She took a long drink of water, swallowing it slowly as she looked around the courtyard.
  • Cliff nodded, washing down his mouthful with a drink of pale liquid that smelled heavily of mangos.
  • She was distressed and had to be given several drinks of water.
swallow, gulp, sip, draught, swill
informal swig, slug
North American informal chug
1.2 [mass noun] Alcohol, or the habitual or excessive consumption of alcohol: the effects of too much drink they both took to drink
More example sentences
  • He told the meeting that there would be no consumption of drink at the museum.
  • Like many successful Irish events, Dublin football games are bound up with the vast consumption of drink.
  • He describes the extravagant body language, the noise, the excessive consumption of food and drink.
alcohol, liquor, intoxicating liquor, alcoholic drink, strong drink, intoxicants
informal booze, hooch, the hard stuff, firewater, gut-rot, rotgut, moonshine, tipple, the demon drink, the bottle, juice, the sauce, grog, Dutch courage, John Barleycorn
British informal wallop, bevvy
1.3A glass of liquid, especially when alcoholic: we went for a drink
More example sentences
  • The bartender poured a drink into a shot glass, and gave it to him.
  • There are a number of young people who think that if they drink out of a bottle rather than a glass, their drink will not be spiked.
  • Smith, the mother of a young son, had been persuaded to go for a drink and thought a glass of wine would leave her system in an hour.
glass, cup, mug
1.4 (drinks) A social gathering at which alcoholic drinks are served: would you like to come for drinks on Sunday?
More example sentences
  • As the round of Christmas parties begins, with drinks after work, alcohol-fuelled meals or a glass or two of wine with friends, danger lies in taking a chance.
  • It still breathes fire at night, greeting guests who gather for drinks or dinner.
  • No, I'm sorry, I just don't have any time for dinner, drinks, lunch, coffee or meetings before I leave San Francisco.
1.5 (the drink) informal The sea or another large area of water: he heaved the outboard motor into the drink
More example sentences
  • She was known as a ‘forgiving’ boat, allowing her crew to make mistakes without tossing them into the drink.
  • When I stepped off my boat I found that after weeks at sea I could hardly stand - as soon as I stepped onto the jetty I almost fell straight backwards into the drink again.
  • Me and Keith got caught by an alarmingly large gust of wind and ended up in the drink.
the sea, the ocean, the water
informal the briny, Davy Jones's locker
literary the deep



be drinking in the last chance saloon

British informal see last chance.
Example sentences
  • City chiefs are drinking in the last chance saloon.
  • ‘Stewart was aware that as far as the committee were concerned, on this issue, he was very much drinking in the last chance saloon,’ said the letter.
  • According to the colourfully worded letter to members this week, they warned Mr Hulse he was drinking in the last chance saloon.

drink and drive

Drive a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol.
Example sentences
  • He urged motorists to stick to speed limits, pay attention when driving, wear seatbelts at all times, never drink and drive and always drive according to road conditions.
  • This is encouraging people to drink and drive when the message is not to drink and drive at all.
  • Since then, the message has been remorselessly driven home: do not drink and drive.

drink deep

Take a large draught or draughts of something: figurative he learnt to drink deep of the Catholic tradition
More example sentences
  • Harry and Dolly and I stood in the kitchen doorway looking out, sniffing at the cool, damp, slightly metallic smell of the earth drinking deep after so long a drought.
  • But Oxfam's research suggests we're drinking deep from the cup of inequity.
  • It offers an opportunity to drink deep of the Gothic atmosphere and muse on the blurry boundaries between truth and illusion.

drink someone's health

Express one’s good wishes for someone by raising one’s glass and drinking a small amount.
Example sentences
  • I drank their health as they embark on new adventures.
  • I signed his card and donated money for a present, and drank his health at the pub.
  • Don't be surprised if a perfect stranger comes over to drink your health - it's just that kind of place.

drink (a toast) to

Celebrate or wish for the good fortune of someone or something by raising one’s glass and drinking a small amount: let’s drink to the success of our venture
More example sentences
  • Let's drink to that and celebrate our challenging lives!
  • I'm off to get a glass of red and drink a toast to all my visitors - whoever and wherever you are.
  • As a finale, he tips the water bucket on himself and downs a glass of tap water - drinking to the health of the city, the world and car-free Kensington.
toast, propose a toast to, wish success/luck/health to, salute

drink someone under the table

informal Consume as much alcohol as one’s drinking companion without becoming as drunk.
Example sentences
  • Girls have always felt like the weaker sex so now they want to show guys that they aren't - even if it's by drinking them under the table!
  • I'd tell guys, ‘I can drink you under the table!’
  • These guys can drink you under the table, and talk your ears off once you're down there.

drive someone to drink

often humorous
Trouble or disturb someone so much that they start to drink alcohol heavily: a job with enough management crises and near-disasters to drive any sane person to drink
More example sentences
  • Loneliness drives people to drink, to gamble, to shop of to get involved in destructive relationships.
  • Baino is the most genial, laughing at situations that, in retrospect, probably drove him to drink.
  • I've always assumed that politics would drive anyone to drink.

I'll drink to that

Uttered to express one’s agreement with or approval of a statement.
Example sentences
  • When I get back to civilisation, I'll drink to that.
  • To them there has not been anything easy about it and if the next game is won by ten points, well I'll drink to that and look forward to the next
  • ‘I'll drink to that,’ Jamie announced, raising her glass of punch before taking a sip.

in drink

When intoxicated: we’ve hit each other before, in drink
More example sentences
  • I have no doubt that during his periods of service in Germany he was drinking heavily and when in drink was aggressive and on occasions violent.
  • We will continue to pursue those who flout licensing regulations in supplying drink to minors and those already in drink.
  • We have to take children home aged 13 or 14 who are in drink and to be honest we never know what reaction we are going to get from the parents.


Old English drincan (verb), drinc (noun), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch drinken and German trinken.

  • Old English drinc ‘drink’ had a close relative drenc which is the source of drench (Old English). The colloquial phrase the drink referring to the sea, dates from the mid 19th century, but drink like a fish goes back to at least the early 17th when John Fletcher and James Shirley wrote a play called The Night-Walker which contains the line ‘Give me the bottle, I can drink like a Fish now, like an Elephant’. Drunk comes from the past tense of drink. We now use the American drunk as a skunk, but Chaucer describes someone as drunk as a mouse; and drunk as a rat or even a wheelbarrow have been used in the past. Drunkards have been with us since at least the 13th century.

Words that rhyme with drink

bethink, blink, brink, cinque, clink, dink, fink, Frink, gink, ink, interlink, jink, kink, link, mink, pink, plink, prink, rink, shrink, sink, skink, slink, stink, sync, think, wink, zinc

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Line breaks: drink

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