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Suffocate   /sˈəfəkˌeɪt/   Listen
Suffocate

verb
(past & past part. suffocated; pres. part. suffocating)
1.
Deprive of oxygen and prevent from breathing.  Synonyms: asphyxiate, smother.  "The child suffocated herself with a plastic bag that the parents had left on the floor"
2.
Impair the respiration of or obstruct the air passage of.  Synonyms: asphyxiate, choke, stifle.
3.
Become stultified, suppressed, or stifled.  Synonym: choke.
4.
Suppress the development, creativity, or imagination of.  Synonym: choke.
5.
Be asphyxiated; die from lack of oxygen.  Synonyms: asphyxiate, stifle.
6.
Feel uncomfortable for lack of fresh air.
7.
Struggle for breath; have insufficient oxygen intake.  Synonyms: choke, gag, strangle.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Suffocate" Quotes from Famous Books



... we were young and took those trips to Cowichan. It is pretty hard to go!" I fully agreed with him then, but when later he got so bad and suffered so much, he prayed to go, and I again agreed with him, poor fellow. This latter time was when to speak made him cough and suffocate. "Old man, I cannot talk to you," and he would lie back in an exhausted state, and I would go, sorry that I was unable to do anything to relieve him, to slightly repay all his kindness ...
— Some Reminiscences of old Victoria • Edgar Fawcett

... childhood, said one harsh word to me—who have sunk all a father's authority in a father's love,—how can I say all that I feel for you?—the grateful overflowing, (paining, yet—oh, how sweet!) remembrances which crowd around and suffocate me now?—The time will come when Ellinor and Ellinor's children must be all in all to you—when of your poor Madeline nothing will be left but a memory; but they, they will watch on you and tend you, and protect your grey ...
— Eugene Aram, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... pillow, two loaded pistols, and several loaded guns, with a chest of fire-arms at the side of his bed. He formed a conspiracy to murder his father. He was arrested and imprisoned. Choking with rage, he called for a fire, and threw himself into the flames, hoping to suffocate himself. Being rescued, he attempted to starve himself. Failing in this, he tried to choke himself by swallowing a diamond. He threw off his clothes, and went naked and barefoot on the stone floor, hoping to engender some fatal disease. For eleven days he took no food but ice. At length the ...
— The Empire of Austria; Its Rise and Present Power • John S. C. Abbott

... landlord, and while they hitched Queen to the buggy, the old man stood helplessly wringing and fumbling his big ugly hands, muttering incoherently, and tugging at his collar as though about to suffocate. ...
— The Clansman - An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan • Thomas Dixon

... to sweat myself to death," he told himself. "I'd better be as quiet as I can. There is air enough coming under the door so I won't suffocate, so I might just as well wait and see what ...
— The Broncho Rider Boys with Funston at Vera Cruz - Or, Upholding the Honor of the Stars and Stripes • Frank Fowler

... of the car—of the floor and ceiling and walls. But there was not a loose plank nor a crack—the car was new. And that suggested another idea—that he might suffocate before he starved. He was beginning to feel ...
— Samuel the Seeker • Upton Sinclair

... violence I rushed on him furiously. 'You villain!' I began to cry, 'you villain!' A touch on the chest silenced me: I am stout, and soon put out of breath; and, what with that and the rage, I staggered dizzily back and felt ready to suffocate, or to burst a blood- vessel. The scene was over in two minutes; Catherine, released, put her two hands to her temples, and looked just as if she were not sure whether her ears were off or on. She trembled like a reed, poor thing, and leant ...
— Wuthering Heights • Emily Bronte

... emerged into daylight by a large iron trap-door, pierced with innumerable small holes, the object of which, as well as of a groove in the rock communicating with the subterranean passage, was to enable the garrison, by filling the passage with smoke and flame, to suffocate and blind the besiegers should they ever succeed by any accident in penetrating thus far—in itself, as it seemed to me, a very improbable contingency. We clambered up the face of the rock to its summit, whence we had an extensive view of the ...
— A Journey to Katmandu • Laurence Oliphant

... observation and experience have taught me that the more you yield to these demons of vanity and worry, the more relentlessly they harry you. They veritably are demons that seize you by the throat and hang on like grim death until they suffocate and ...
— Quit Your Worrying! • George Wharton James

... only to the child, but to the other members of the family, antitoxin is immediately administered. The disease runs a regular course and its most dangerous complication is the membrane which forms in the larynx and threatens to suffocate the child unless prompt intubation is performed—the slipping of a silver tube in the larynx to prevent suffocation and death. The early use of antitoxin greatly lessens ...
— The Mother and Her Child • William S. Sadler

... is done, it can only be done quickly; for the moss is rising rapidly in the shaft, and even though some of the men are safe in the upper workings, it is only a question of a very short time till the moss will rise and suffocate them, or until the black damp does so. If you have any idea that can help, out with it and let us make a trial, for the inactivity is ...
— The Underworld - The Story of Robert Sinclair, Miner • James C. Welsh

... paint did have a pretty fierce smell, but I didn't put much faith in it. I'd been in opium joints, an' I knew that a Chinaman would FATTEN on a smell 'at would suffocate a goat; an' when it comes to vigorous an' able-bodied odors, a billy-goat ...
— Happy Hawkins • Robert Alexander Wason

... the dry-goods merchant. "A man that'll pay double fare to have the whole earth to himself when other folks has to be packed into a berth and suffocate! The conductor said he paid double to Chicago to get that compartment, and he's only goin' out in the desert a little ways. I'd ...
— Overland Red - A Romance of the Moonstone Canon Trail • Henry Herbert Knibbs

... free himself were in vain. For hours he lay there, gasping for breath. Suddenly, when he was about to suffocate, the door was broken open, and he found himself fainting in ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol VIII • Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton, Eds.

... bending to the oars, his long boating practice now standing him in good stead. The fumes from the burning oil were almost unbearable, threatening to suffocate the occupants of the yawl. Thirty yards away was the shore. The muscles in Shawn's arms were straining to their utmost. The heavily laden boat was ...
— Shawn of Skarrow • James Tandy Ellis

... like those of a farmhouse in the country. I fancy Antony fled thither for a few moments, from the visitors who weary him; breathing the freshness of that dewy garden in the very midst of Paris. As for me, I suffocate this summer afternoon in this pretty Watteau chamber of ours, where Jean-Baptiste is ...
— Imaginary Portraits • Walter Pater

... together under our respective blankets in a vain attempt to sleep. We had made a protecting wall with our baggage, and my men covered their heads and everything with their blankets; but I never could adopt their style of sleeping, as it seemed to suffocate me. I always slept with my head uncovered, for not only was it more comfortable, but I wished to be on the alert should we at any time be surprised by Tibetans. My men moaned, groaned, and chattered ...
— In the Forbidden Land • Arnold Henry Savage Landor

... said we ought to find a cave, and go in, Nick," continued the youth. "Suppose we do, and the sulphur fumes suffocate us? They must be just awful inside the mountain. This is a nice pickle for me to get into! If I stay out here I'm in danger of being drowned, or swept away by a landslide; if I go inside there's all the chance in the world that I'll be soaking in poisonous sulphur gas till I keel over. I'm up against ...
— The Saddle Boys of the Rockies - Lost on Thunder Mountain • James Carson

... from the town towards the evening of the next day. She was displeased with something, but she concealed it, and only said, why was it all the window frames had been put in for the winter it was enough to suffocate one. I took out two frames. We were not hungry, but we ...
— The Chorus Girl and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... "Leave the creatures in peace, I will not suffer you to kill them." At length they came to a bee's nest, in which there was so much honey that it ran out of the trunk of the tree where it was. The two wanted to make a fire beneath the tree, and suffocate the bees in order to take away the honey, but Simpleton again stopped them and said, "Leave the creatures in peace, I will not allow you to burn them." At length the three brothers arrived at a castle where stone ...
— Household Tales by Brothers Grimm • Grimm Brothers

... thinking of the advantage of the man on board a warship. He, at least, could go down with a last look at the world about him. Below, nothing could be seen, nothing could be heard. If the submarine went down, all would suffocate in ...
— The Boy Allies Under Two Flags • Ensign Robert L. Drake

... are simple, and they can live comfortably on an amazingly small sum. The better class of Italians keep their apartments as neat as possible. Children of a genial clime, they are fond of warmth, and the temperature of their rooms stands at a stage which would suffocate an American. They are very exclusive, and herd by themselves in a section of the Five Points. Baxter and Park and the adjoining streets are taken up to a great extent ...
— Lights and Shadows of New York Life - or, the Sights and Sensations of the Great City • James D. McCabe

... Doctor's pistol, sending one of them shrieking to the ground. Bang! Once more, and a fellow who had nearly overpowered the breathless Figgs staggered back. Dick was writhing on the ground beneath the weight of a dead man and a fellow who was trying to suffocate him. Buttons was being throttled by three others who held him powerless, his razor being broken. A crack on Mr. Figgs's head laid him low. The Doctor stood off at a ...
— The Dodge Club - or, Italy in 1859 • James De Mille

... Lord God, thou knowest! Their babes have been torn from their bosoms and cast upon the plains to die of hunger, or to be devoured by hyenas or jackals. The little innocents would die on the "Middle Passage," or suffocate between the decks of the floating slave-pen, freighted and packed with unparalleled human woe, and the slavers in mercy have cast them out to perish on their native shores. Such is the beginning, and no less wicked is the end of that system which ...
— Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence - The Best Speeches Delivered by the Negro from the days of - Slavery to the Present Time • Various

... taken our breath away, Wingate. Your amazing assurance has made it difficult for us to answer you coherently. I am only now beginning to realise that you are in earnest in this idiotic piece of melodrama, but if you are—so are we.—You can starve us or shoot us or suffocate us, but we shall not ...
— The Profiteers • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... you city chaps now. That makes the fourth engine that's come past. You get more for your money than we do. Look at that chief hurdling curbstones in his little red wagon. If Homeburg ever gets big enough to have a chief's wagon, I'll suffocate ...
— Homeburg Memories • George Helgesen Fitch

... further welcome, but when Henry sought the blankets the third night he became conscious that the first flush of the return was over. The weather had turned very hot—it was now July—and the walls and ceiling of the room seemed to press upon him and suffocate him. He drew deep and long breaths, but there was not air enough to fill a chest that had long been used to the illimitable outside. It was very still in the room. He longed to hear the boughs of trees waving over ...
— The Border Watch - A Story of the Great Chief's Last Stand • Joseph A. Altsheler

... enough; and now sat waiting the issue, with his natural diabolico-angelical Indifference, if not even Placidity? Did we not hear him complain that the World was a 'huge Ragfair,' and the 'rags and tatters of old Symbols' were raining-down everywhere, like to drift him in, and suffocate him? What with those 'unhunted Helots' of his; and the uneven sic-vos-non-vobis pressure and hard-crashing collision he is pleased to discern in existing things; what with the so hateful 'empty Masks,' full of beetles and spiders, yet glaring out on him, from their glass eyes, 'with a ghastly ...
— Sartor Resartus, and On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and the Heroic in History • Thomas Carlyle

... their joy is that of the angels of the highest heaven or of the lowest heaven, for everyone entering heaven comes into the highest joy of his own heart; joy higher still he does not endure; he would suffocate ...
— Angelic Wisdom about Divine Providence • Emanuel Swedenborg

... he paced with rapid strides up and down the floor, like some wild animal in his cage, impatient of confinement. At last, although—being summer—the window was open, he felt as if he could remain here no longer, lest he should suffocate for want of air; as if the roof pressed down upon his head; as if, to breathe, he needed the whole atmosphere; to walk, he required space without limits; to lift up his brow, and exhale his sighs, and elevate his thoughts, to have ...
— Pepita Ximenez • Juan Valera

... moments more, my beloved," she said, "and then we must part. But why are you so pale?" she asked of Hermann, whose heart was beating fast enough to suffocate him; for he was afraid now of the ...
— Fairy Tales from the German Forests • Margaret Arndt

... and scientific men, can be so barbarous as to invent such grotesque names as these is surprizing, or why Apicius should be remembered for having been the first to teach mankind how to suffocate fish in Carthaginian pickle; or Quin, for having discovered a sauce for John Dories; or Mrs. Glasse, for an eel pie; or M. Soyer, celebrated for depriving barbel of their sight, in order to make them grow fatter, and be more acceptable ...
— Le Morvan, [A District of France,] Its Wild Sports, Vineyards and Forests; with Legends, Antiquities, Rural and Local Sketches • Henri de Crignelle

... and burrow in immense quantities in the Pampas. The only way to get rid of them was by puffing the fumes of burning sulphur down into their holes; and it was quite a part of the boys' regular work to go out with the machine for the purpose, and to suffocate these troublesome creatures. Their holes, however, are not so dangerous to horsemen as are those of the armadillos, as the ground is always bare in ...
— Out on the Pampas - The Young Settlers • G. A. Henty

... "They will surely suffocate anon," said Marguerite. "Twenty-two years agone, on the Grand Friday, two hundred persons died stifled under the porch of The Annunciation. God have their souls in keeping! Ay, those were the good times, when I ...
— The Merrie Tales Of Jacques Tournebroche - 1909 • Anatole France

... coincidence that the dream should have occurred to him, at this moment. He at once announced his readiness to surrender; but his forty companions did not see the matter in the same light. The moment Josephus left them, the Roman soldiers would throw combustibles down the well, and suffocate them, if they did not come ...
— For the Temple - A Tale of the Fall of Jerusalem • G. A. Henty

... Where shall I hang my coat? Oh, is there a closet behind that curtain? Six hooks! Neil, you can't have but one of them—I want the rest. Sally, how did you ever come to it, after that great roomy old house of yours? I should suffocate in a week! It's lucky we're going on to-morrow. I couldn't change my ...
— Strawberry Acres • Grace S. Richmond

... partly by force, among these wretches. One of them rushed close to the king, and endeavoured to kill one of his officers. It was thought sufficient to disarm him, but he again fell upon his victim, rolled him on the ground, and attempted to suffocate him; and even after his arms were seized and held, he still strove to tear him with his teeth. These were the only Muscovites who had waited our coming, and who seemed to have been left behind as a savage and barbarous token ...
— History of the Expedition to Russia - Undertaken by the Emperor Napoleon in the Year 1812 • Count Philip de Segur

... my life I write to you! How my hand trembles—how my cheek flushes! a thousand, thousand thoughts rush upon me, and almost suffocate me with the variety and confusion of the emotions they awaken! I am agitated alike with the rapture of writing to you, and with the impossibility of expressing the feelings which I cannot distinctly unravel even to myself. You love me, Emily, and ...
— Falkland, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... we're likely to suffocate down here," returned Hal. "I can scarcely get my breath now. We'll have to ...
— The Boy Allies At Verdun • Clair W. Hayes

... that I can think of. Last, and worst of all, came Dick Dobbs, who was afflicted with a cold, and whose snore consisted of a succession of loud chokes, gasps, and puffs, all contending together, as it appeared to me, which should suffocate him soonest. There I lay, wide awake, suffering under the awful nose-chorus which I have attempted to describe, for nearly an hour. It was a dark night: there was no wind, and very little air. Horrible doubts about ...
— Rambles Beyond Railways; - or, Notes in Cornwall taken A-foot • Wilkie Collins

... Captain Morgan was dying. He hurried to his bedside, and found him dead. Captain Steadman, sick in the next bed, and those around him, said he had been talking pleasantly with them, when he sat up to reach his cup of water on the table. As soon as he drank it he seemed to suffocate; and after tossing his arms wildly in the air, and making several fearful efforts to ...
— A Confederate Girl's Diary • Sarah Morgan Dawson

... spectre, which appeared sometimes in the shape of a dog, sometimes in the form of a man, not to one person only, but to several, and caused them great pain, grasping their throats, and compressing their stomachs, so as to suffocate them. It bruised almost the whole body, and reduced them to extreme weakness, so that they ...
— The Phantom World - or, The philosophy of spirits, apparitions, &c, &c. • Augustin Calmet

... of Don Silvio at the protracted resistance of the party, and the security of their retreat. To get at them was impossible, so he determined to set fire to the room, and suffocate them, if he could do no otherwise. He gave his directions to his men, who rushed down for straw, but in so doing he carelessly passed under the trap-door, and Mesty, who had carried up with him two or three of the stones, dashed one down on the head of Don Silvio, who fell ...
— Mr. Midshipman Easy • Captain Frederick Marryat

... the former. "The Boers are on the premises." So saying, he was about to descend into the cavity, and evidently expected the companionship of his tall friend. When I pointed out to them that they would probably suffocate in this modern Black Hole of Calcutta, the little man proceeded to dance round the room, still shouldering his axe, jibbering the while: "I will not go to fight; I am an American. I will not be put in the front rank to be shot by the English, or made ...
— South African Memories - Social, Warlike & Sporting From Diaries Written At The Time • Lady Sarah Wilson

... of chipre there is, Mintz," she murmured in a low voice. "I think I must be tipsy. Yes, I must be. When I drink a great deal I always begin to think there are too many perfumes about. They suffocate me, I get their taste in my mouth, they sing in my ears and I feel ill.... What a smell of chipre ... it is my favourite perfume: do you ...
— Tales of the Wilderness • Boris Pilniak

... conversation had not been cultivated among the Californians, and Ysabel plied her large fan with slow grace, at a loss for further remark, and wondering if her heart would suffocate her. But Don Vicente had the ...
— The Splendid Idle Forties - Stories of Old California • Gertrude Atherton

... for months together, lived in these caves, sallying forth by day to till their farms or gather in their crops, when it was safe so to do. None could approach within range of the muskets pointed from the loopholes at the entrance without being immediately shot down; nor could either fire or smoke suffocate or dislodge the inmates, as the ...
— Castles and Cave Dwellings of Europe • Sabine Baring-Gould

... to escape, that he might be able to bear it. Therefore, the envious enemy, considering that the new prelate {219} and the new man was flourishing with so manifold a grace of virtues, devised to send a burning blight of temptation, which might suffocate the germ of his merits already put forth. Nor was there any delay. He who severs a man from his God, and one friend from his neighbour, sowed irreconcileable quarrels between the king and ...
— Primitive Christian Worship • James Endell Tyler

... cramped hutches full of sleeping negroes. Pah! They have a charcoal fire within; there is a smell of singeing clothes, or flesh, so close they gather round the brazier; and vapours issue forth that blind and suffocate. From every corner, as you glance about you in these dark retreats, some figure crawls half-awakened, as if the judgment-hour were near at hand, and every obscene grave were giving up its dead. Where dogs would howl to lie, women, and men, and boys slink off to sleep, ...
— American Notes for General Circulation • Charles Dickens

... of this lake that we cut eye-holes in our pocket-handkerchiefs and wore them as masks. Even then we had to run back every few moments for a breath of fresher air, though we were on the windward side of the lake. The gases on the leeward side would suffocate one instantly. Oh, the glory! This Hale-mau-mau, whose fire never goes out, is a huge lake of liquid lava, heaving with groans and thunderings that cannot be described. Around its edge, as you see in the picture, the red lava was spouting furiously. Now and then the center of the lake cooled ...
— St. Nicholas Magazine for Boys and Girls, Vol. 5, Nov 1877-Nov 1878 - No 1, Nov 1877 • Various

... . if so he can sit, never loosing his will, and with a gesture of his hands that "breaks into very flame," he feels that he must draw her from "the house called hers, not mine," which soon will seem to suffocate her if she ...
— Browning's Heroines • Ethel Colburn Mayne



Words linked to "Suffocate" :   impede, become, close up, choke, obstruct, kick the bucket, conk, expire, hurt, obturate, pop off, cover, croak, asphyxiate, block, pass away, stifle, snuff it, suffocative, feel, kill, suffer, occlude, buy the farm, jam, cash in one's chips, strangle, pass, give-up the ghost, dampen, perish, decease, gag, suffocation, die, drop dead, turn, exit, go



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