Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To feel pain or distress; sustain loss, injury, harm, or punishment.
  • intransitive v. To tolerate or endure evil, injury, pain, or death. See Synonyms at bear1.
  • intransitive v. To appear at a disadvantage: "He suffers by comparison with his greater contemporary” ( Albert C. Baugh).
  • transitive v. To undergo or sustain (something painful, injurious, or unpleasant): "Ordinary men have always had to suffer the history their leaders were making” ( Herbert J. Muller).
  • transitive v. To experience; undergo: suffer a change in staff.
  • transitive v. To endure or bear; stand: would not suffer fools.
  • transitive v. To permit; allow: "They were not suffered to aspire to so exalted a position as that of streetcar conductor” ( Edmund S. Morgan).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To undergo hardship.
  • v. To feel pain.
  • v. To have a disease or condition.
  • v. To become worse.
  • v. To endure, undergo.
  • v. To allow.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To feel, or endure, with pain, annoyance, etc.; to submit to with distress or grief; to undergo.
  • transitive v. To endure or undergo without sinking; to support; to sustain; to bear up under.
  • transitive v. To undergo; to be affected by; to sustain; to experience
  • transitive v. To allow; to permit; not to forbid or hinder; to tolerate.
  • intransitive v. To feel or undergo pain of body or mind; to bear what is inconvenient.
  • intransitive v. To undergo punishment; specifically, to undergo the penalty of death.
  • intransitive v. To be injured; to sustain loss or damage.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To endure; support bravely or unflinchingly; sustain; bear up under.
  • To be affected by; undergo; be acted on or influenced by; sustain; pass through.
  • To feel or bear (what is painful, disagreeable, or distressing); submit to with distress or grief; undergo: as, to suffer acute bodily pain; to suffer grief of mind.
  • To refrain from hindering; allow; permit; tolerate.
  • To tolerate abstention from.
  • Synonyms To feel, bear, experience, go through.
  • Allow, Permit, Consent to, etc. See allow.
  • To have endurance; bear evils bravely.
  • To feel or undergo pain of body or mind; bear what is distressing or inconvenient.
  • To be injured; sustain loss or damage.
  • To undergo punishment; especially, to be put to death.
  • To allow; permit.
  • To wait; hold out.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. be set at a disadvantage
  • v. undergo (as of injuries and illnesses)
  • v. feel pain or be in pain
  • v. put up with something or somebody unpleasant
  • v. experience (emotional) pain
  • v. undergo or be subjected to
  • v. feel physical pain
  • v. be given to
  • v. undergo or suffer
  • v. get worse
  • v. feel unwell or uncomfortable

Etymologies

Middle English suffren, from Old French sufrir, from Vulgar Latin *sufferīre, from Latin sufferre : sub-, sub- + ferre, to carry.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English suffren, from Anglo-Norman suffrir, from Latin suffero ("to offer, hold up, bear, suffer"), from sub- ("up, under") + ferō ("I carry"), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰer- (“to bear, carry”). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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