What does Famine mean?

Definitions for Famine
ˈfæm ɪnFamine

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word Famine.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. dearth, famine, shortagenoun

    an acute insufficiency

  2. faminenoun

    a severe shortage of food (as through crop failure) resulting in violent hunger and starvation and death


  1. faminenoun

    extreme shortage of food in a region

    Etymology: From famine.

  2. faminenoun

    a period of extreme shortage of food in a region

    Etymology: From famine.

  3. faminenoun

    During times of famine

    Etymology: From famine.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Faminenoun

    general scarcity of food; dearth; a want of provisions; destitution

    Etymology: [F. famine, fr. L. fames hunger; cf. Gr. want, need, Skr. hni loss, lack, h to leave.]


  1. Famine

    A famine is a widespread scarcity of food, caused by several factors including crop failure, population unbalance, or government policies. This phenomenon is usually accompanied or followed by regional malnutrition, starvation, epidemic, and increased mortality. Nearly every continent in the world has experienced a period of famine throughout history. Some countries, particularly in sub-Sahara Africa, continue to have extreme cases of famine. The famine relief model increasingly used by aid groups calls for giving cash or cash vouchers to the hungry to pay local farmers instead of buying food from donor countries, as is often required by law, as it wastes money on transport costs, but more importantly, it perpetuates the cycle of dependency on foreign imports rather than helping to create real local stability through agricultural abundance. Emergency measures in relieving famine include providing high calorie ready-to-use therapeutic food, through fortified sachets of peanut-based paste such as Plumpy'nut that are given primarily to children. Long-term measures include investment in modern agriculture techniques, such as fertilizers and irrigation, which largely eradicated hunger in the developed world. World Bank strictures restrict government subsidies for farmers, and increasing use of fertilizers is opposed by some environmental groups because of its unintended consequences: adverse effects on water supplies and habitat.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Famine

    fam′in, n. general scarcity of food: extreme scarcity of anything, as in 'famine prices,' &c.: hunger: starvation. [Fr., through an unrecorded Low L. famina, from L. fames, hunger.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce Famine?

How to say Famine in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Famine in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Famine in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Examples of Famine in a Sentence

  1. Patricia Arquette:

    I can't tell you what this means to me, i'm a fourth-generation actor. My family has been committed to acting for over a century, through feast or famine.

  2. Adham Musallam:

    This means that we must not wait until the situation reaches famine but must act now to provide humanitarian aid directly.

  3. World Bank:

    The FAM seeks to change this by moving towards famine prevention, preparedness and early action—interventions that can save more lives and reduce humanitarian costs by as much as 30 percent.

  4. Andrei Lankov:

    Agriculture is much less state-run and much more private than it used to be, and the farmers who work for themselves work better and with greater efficiency, north Korea is highly unlikely to experience another famine even remotely similar to what happened in the late nineties.

  5. Brendan Zietsch:

    We can't rule out the possibility that extreme environmental events, like famine, could affect offspring sex ratios. But we can say for sure that the variability of environments that Swedes born after 1932 experienced did not affect their having boys or girls.

Images & Illustrations of Famine

  1. FamineFamineFamineFamineFamine

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Famine

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

Get even more translations for Famine »


Find a translation for the Famine definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:

Discuss these Famine definitions with the community:



    Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


    "Famine." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 28 Oct. 2021. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/Famine>.

    Are we missing a good definition for Famine? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Browse Definitions.net

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!


    Are you a words master?

    base and cowardly
    • A. motile
    • B. currish
    • C. bibulous
    • D. flabby

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for Famine: