Definition of comfort in English:

comfort

noun

  • 1A state of physical ease and freedom from pain or constraint:

    ‘there is room for four people to travel in comfort’
    • ‘For this second mode of reception we, as an audience, have been trained into wanting physical comfort [in the cinema, at home] with food, drink on hand.’
    • ‘We've learned from our evaluations that physical comfort is much more important to parents than children.’
    • ‘With the ease and comfort of airline travel British and European anglers are travelling to warmer climes for their holidays and taking advantage of this exciting fishing.’
    • ‘Absurdly for something which causes so much damage to its surroundings, the car symbolise comfort, convenience and freedom for the self.’
    • ‘The modular pads of the suspension system offer improved stability and physical comfort.’
    • ‘Many travellers enjoy the ease and comfort of train travel and, for those who have time on their side, it's a great way to traverse our enormous country.’
    • ‘She appreciates the fact that in Bulgaria, there is all the convenience and comfort of regular utility services like water, electricity, and heating.’
    • ‘Obviously, food selection can have an impact on physical comfort during chemotherapy, when mouth sores and mucositis affect the ability to eat.’
    • ‘Hence we should devote our most serious efforts to bringing about mental peace rather than physical comfort.’
    • ‘These particular do-gooders know what is good for the bulk of people who only want to be able to move around the town with a bit of freedom, ease and comfort.’
    • ‘It nourishes the desire for things higher than mere physical comfort.’
    • ‘Although there's little scientific data to support these modalities, they can ease pain and provide comfort for your pet.’
    • ‘The suspension system is an assembly of modular pads that offer improved stability on the wearer's head as well as physical comfort.’
    • ‘He doesn't sit in his low-slung leather chair so much as melt into it, his body surrendering at once to a rare moment of physical comfort.’
    • ‘Instead, you will have green cover greeting your eyes ensuring physical comfort and mental pleasure.’
    • ‘You can have excellent peripheral vision and at the same time, ease, comfort and convenience.’
    • ‘Between the three of them they lugged the baggage into the building to the elevator where they traveled up the 13 floors in comfort and ease.’
    • ‘Does there seem to be a generous supply of equipment, time and space, physical comfort and well being amongst staff and children?’
    • ‘In certain Eastern religions, sages and adepts may make sacrifices of their own physical comfort in order to receive enlightenment.’
    • ‘He seemed concerned about your physical comfort as well.’
    1. 1.1comforts Things that contribute to physical ease and well-being:
      ‘the low upholstered chair was one of the room's few comforts’
      • ‘One broad generalization is applicable to all of us in our life: The genetic material we inherit compels us to seek more and more physical comforts and sensual pleasures.’
      • ‘He is, of course, known for his travels within the comforts of the developed world.’
      • ‘In other words, it offers almost all the comforts and luxuries foreign travelers are accustomed to.’
      • ‘Other comforts include allowing travellers with personal headphones to plug into a variety of music channels and complimentary timetable booklets placed on each seat.’
      • ‘Despite having all the physical comforts we could ask for, we pined for Jimmy.’
      • ‘They can be very selfish where their physical comforts are concerned.’
      • ‘When there's nothing left to say, you turn to physical comforts, and pretend that still means something.’
      • ‘This isn't the first time that students have put the comforts of the western world behind them to help in one of the poorest regions of the world.’
      • ‘Participants have been selected from hundreds of applicants to leave behind their families, jobs and home comforts to live together under one roof and conform to strict house rules.’
      • ‘They believe that by travelling without the comforts of luxury hotels and first class trains they will truly experience their foreign surroundings.’
      • ‘It's an even tighter squeeze once he's added the comforts which ease his solitary existence.’
      • ‘We cannot be content with ‘cheap comforts, living a warm and comfortable lie.’’
      • ‘We should have correction centres with no comforts or special privileges such as colour television or pool tables.’
      • ‘Lounge into adjustable reclining seats, manipulate the overhead AC vents to your liking and take your fill of the comforts of luxury travel.’
      • ‘And we surrounded ourselves with personal comforts.’
      • ‘Such comforts take the forms of more leisure and ease in life in the field of physical sciences, while in the spiritual field they become rituals and traditions.’
      • ‘Hot dogs and bug juice may be necessary to sustain life, but physical comforts are an essential ingredient to sustain emotional health.’
      • ‘With the wisdom of those past years we need to tweak it a bit because people like their comforts.’
      • ‘It has a host of modern comforts and conveniences alongside numerous period features throughout its 240 square metres of living space.’
      • ‘During this time Louis XIV was in power and royalty lived in ridiculous comforts while French commoners starved.’
    2. 1.2 Prosperity and the pleasant lifestyle secured by it:
      ‘my father left us enough to live in comfort’
      • ‘Idi Amin is still living in comfort in Saudi Arabia.’
      • ‘After all, he enjoyed a high position and was living in comfort and luxury.’
      • ‘They are so heavily rewarded for modest finishes that they can live their lives in comfort without having achieved much on their own.’
      • ‘He sends her to live in comfort in a lonely manor-house, only prohibiting her from seeing him or her children again.’
      • ‘I'm getting to the point where I really could quite happily compromise my morals and standards, find some rich old guy and live a life of comfort and luxury.’
      • ‘Here, he thought, academics could live in comfort cheek-by-jowl with students in more modest accommodation.’
      • ‘The pigs on the other hand did not work at all but lived in comfort.’
      • ‘In our heady economic comfort, we have lived alone and let our neighbor die.’
      • ‘Although conditions ran to the squalid, many immigrants preferred saving their earnings to living in comfort.’
      • ‘My fortune enabled me to live my life in comfort, but it also gave me too much time.’
      • ‘Despite living in wealth and comfort, the family was far from happy.’
      • ‘The residents and guests of the Grand Hotel live their lives in comfort and splendor, spending their days in the bar or on the dance floor.’
      • ‘How could this be possible, this unfair life of toil, all for a lethargic baron who lived in comfort?’
      • ‘Today many Han live in comfort, both in the city and the country.’
      • ‘Diversion and manipulation are niche marketed, the spectacle of prosperity and comfort is produced, and huge profits are made.’
      • ‘Having made it through university, they want to live in comfort and make good money working in places such as Beijing, Shanghai, or Shenzhen.’
      • ‘Make sure our future duchess will live in comfort.’
      • ‘There is a genteel air of comfort and prosperity here and a crisp and clean environment only adds to it.’
      • ‘He had two children with her but his pension was insufficient to allow the family to live in comfort.’
      • ‘A world where some live in comfort and plenty, while half of the human race lives on less than $2 a day, is neither just nor stable.’
      ease, freedom from hardship, repose, relaxation, serenity, tranquillity, contentment, content, well-being, cosiness, enjoyment
      View synonyms
  • 2The easing or alleviation of a person's feelings of grief or distress:

    ‘a few words of comfort’
    ‘they should take comfort that help is available’
    • ‘And I warn you in advance that there'll be absolutely nothing here of comfort or consolation.’
    • ‘Always putting foremost the welfare of others, she was, for many years, a Handmaid in Knock where she helped bring comfort, solace and support to those in need.’
    • ‘Tears flowed freely and words of comfort and condolence were repeated over and over to the devastated family.’
    • ‘I don't know what to say, how to express my feelings to the bereaved, whether to offer words of comfort and sympathy or tell them to be brave.’
    • ‘A family, unused to the centre of the stage and broken in grief, draw comfort from the predictability of the rituals.’
    • ‘If someone has the gift of speaking words of comfort and help, he should speak.’
    • ‘The couple's only comfort in their grief is that other teenagers may now think twice before getting into a stolen car.’
    • ‘He does, however, see an opportunity for brands to provide consumers with comfort and relief from the anxieties caused by safety fears.’
    • ‘He was given words of comfort and sympathy by fellow MPs in the Commons yesterday following the death of his wife.’
    • ‘But this was of little consolation or comfort to the latter who for the second year running had lost out at the final hurdle.’
    • ‘The look on his face is one of genuine grief, empathy and comfort.’
    • ‘She always had a word of consolation and comfort to all who had the pleasure of knowing her.’
    • ‘He was accepting words of consolation and comfort from his visitors with such a sad and distressed look on his face.’
    • ‘As a result of the tragic event of losing a child, these mothers turn to religion for consolation and comfort.’
    • ‘Colin, recently bereaved, has been invited to tea by his friends, who whilst they nervously await his arrival, are determined to give him some comfort in his grief.’
    • ‘Do we sometimes think of religion as a soother, that it's about making us feel good, or providing comfort and consolation?’
    • ‘We also wish to express our appreciation to all the family, neighbors and friends for their words of comfort and support during this difficult time.’
    • ‘Numerous too were the funeral Masses he celebrated over the years and he was always a source of comfort and consolation to families in times of grief.’
    • ‘Her singing had brought great life and joy to many occasions but it had also brought great comfort, support and consolation to those in bereavement.’
    • ‘There is something very natural about a funeral from the home in which a person has spent their life and it can also be a source of great comfort and consolation to those grieving the loss of a loved one.’
    consolation, solace, condolence, sympathy, fellow feeling, commiseration
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1[in singular] A person or thing that helps to alleviate a difficult situation:
      ‘his friendship was a great comfort’
      • ‘That allows the money to last longer - a comfort for anyone in this situation.’
      • ‘In many ways this is a comfort and a consolation.’
      • ‘At the age of 17, when I was homeless, all I had were my thoughts and the comfort of pretending that my situation would improve.’
      • ‘Now, I look at the last pages of Christopher's and my life together, and his death and funeral and memorial service, and she's done them so beautifully, they are such a comfort.’
      • ‘Remembering what she had read about how difficult it was to control wasn't much of a comfort.’
      • ‘I have also had a number of messages of support from people I have worked with outside the Council and that is a comfort to me.’
      • ‘There can be a comfort in having the public perceive you as a talented coach whose hands are tied by financial restraints.’
      • ‘‘You can only admire the sheer professionalism of our service, which is a great comfort when we are in these difficulties,’ he said.’
      • ‘Once stark, empty stores are filled with the things that few can buy, but the mere presence of such luxuries is a comfort.’
      • ‘This is not comfortable listening, but you will find a comfort of sorts within its glacial heart.’
      • ‘It's a dubious and conflicted comfort, but a comfort of sorts.’
      • ‘While a great comfort on long or rough rides, there are some situations where a fully locked differential is a benefit.’
      • ‘The silence that had slid around her in the cold, dark room was not a comfort or a reassurance.’
      • ‘However, it's a comfort to learn that bacteria and viruses can be eliminated by using only ‘final-rinse’ washing water.’
      • ‘As much as that should have been a comfort, a reassurance, it wasn't.’
      • ‘Knowing you are not the only one in this situation is a great comfort.’
      • ‘It was a comfort to know that there were people around who would treat us kindly.’
      • ‘Jackie reassured her, the news a comfort to her ears.’
  • 3US dialect A warm quilt.

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Ease the grief or distress of:

    ‘the victim was comforted by friends before being taken to hospital’
    • ‘They comfort, console, offer hope, inspire humanitarian endeavors, and can inspire work for justice.’
    • ‘And they comforted her with their presence and with their appreciation and just by the fact that they listened.’
    • ‘I was comforted by the presence of Helen and the new baby and by the support of friends.’
    • ‘How your strength comforts me, my gallant warrior; your love is the armour that protects my soul, even unto death.’
    • ‘My friends try to comfort me by suggesting that any publicity is good publicity and that a picture is worth a thousand words.’
    • ‘As a consequence the listener really feels soothed and comforted throughout.’
    • ‘They're there for me - they comfort, cajole, coerce, cohort, conspire, and commiserate.’
    • ‘Stories of her presence comforting soldiers in the trenches of WWI abounded.’
    • ‘She doesn't comfort, soothe or sympathise - she is just out to get me as much as she can.’
    • ‘Our natural impulse is to soothe, to comfort, to relieve suffering.’
    • ‘The songs on the album prove meditative, probing, and soothing all at once; they comfort without slipping into naivete.’
    • ‘Something inside me, possibly my instinct, tells me that I should comfort him, consoling him in any possible way.’
    • ‘His presence comforts me though - something about his personality makes me feel warm inside.’
    • ‘You do it when the kid is upset, and you have to carry him, and you're trying to comfort him and protect him as you walk.’
    • ‘I held her hand and comforted her, an inadequate gesture for an elderly person about to live on the street in a tent.’
    • ‘My instinct is to soothe and comfort; I can never just walk away.’
    • ‘Police, medical staff, relatives and friends were today comforting the family.’
    • ‘Even if no one ever contacts you this way, just the presence of this information comforts edgy customers.’
    • ‘But tonight I didn't have the time or strength to comfort her, and at that moment I was just as terrified as she was.’
    1. 1.1 Improve the mood of or restore a sense of physical well-being to:
      ‘he dined outdoors, comforted by the crackling sounds of the fire’
      • ‘Refreshed and relaxed, Michiko dined outdoors, comforted by the crackling sounds of the fire and hot bowls of rice with roasted guinea hen.’
      • ‘She could vaguely smell his cologne, a smell that comforted her.’
      • ‘Have you ever started a diet one week, only to comfort yourself with an entire pan of brownies the next?’
      • ‘Players trek into deep jungle and coconut mangroves while comforted by the cool breezes from the ocean.’
      • ‘The Cape, with its soft sea breezes, had always comforted Tyianne when she vacationed here.’
      • ‘A refreshing breeze comforted the golfers but hampered their game.’
      • ‘Her former secretary recalls Daphne dispatching her housekeeper on more than one occasion with a Thermos of soup to comfort some ailing don.’
      • ‘Comfort yourself with its minestrone soup, made Sicilian style - pure vegetables, no pasta.’

Origin

Middle English (as a noun, in the senses ‘strengthening, support, consolation’; as a verb, in the senses ‘strengthen, give support, console’): from Old French confort (noun), conforter (verb), from late Latin confortare strengthen, from com- (expressing intensive force) + Latin fortis strong. The sense ‘something producing physical ease’ arose in the mid 17th century.

Pronunciation:

comfort

/ˈkʌmfət/