Definition of feed in English:



  • 1Give food to.

    ‘the raiders fed the guard dog to keep it quiet’
    [with two objects] ‘he fed her brownies he had just baked’
    • ‘The woman said she fed her baby before leaving Detroit but the child became hungry again.’
    • ‘She got right down to work, feeding every dog their measured amount of food, then cleaning out their cages.’
    • ‘She feeds the stray cats that wander through the backyard so there's always a dish of kitty kibble on their table.’
    • ‘Grandpa insists on feeding the dogs good food to keep them healthy for the big hunt.’
    • ‘I'm the one who usually feeds the cat because I wake first and because I'm here more often in the early evening.’
    • ‘It's a laid-back, slightly quirky Egyptian town, with an economy that runs on diving and an unusually large population of cats and dogs, fed by indulgent Europeans.’
    • ‘But his dogs remember who feeds them when they're home.’
    • ‘After feeding his cat, he'd jump in his car for the 15-minute drive to work.’
    • ‘You can feed your cat food that will help to control it too.’
    • ‘The fish were fed once or twice a day on flake food and were fed live food (bloodworms and brine shrimp) every 2 weeks.’
    • ‘It's a bit like looking after someone's dog and feeding it expensive dog food.’
    • ‘The characters - a horse, cat, sparrow, monkey, cat and dog - are fed vintage wine and exquisite food and are blissfully unaware of the outside world.’
    • ‘Through taking a dog for a walk or feeding the cat, patients gain a fragment of normality in a new abnormal world.’
    • ‘Ideally, you will need to get recommendations about the amounts of food to feed your dog from your vet.’
    • ‘In Trial 2, steers fed hay had less shrink than those fed the 55 % concentrate diet.’
    • ‘Steers were then fed starting at approximately 0800 h and were fed once daily.’
    • ‘Remember to feed the dog and don't burn the house down.’
    • ‘‘These people are giving their services for free so we wanted to do our bit by feeding them,’ he said.’
    • ‘Stray cats will not be fed anything except dry cat food.’
    • ‘There's nothing like it out there, nothing that's packaged in convenient small sizes for a mother who's feeding a baby.’
    give food to, provide food for, provide for, cater for, prepare food for, cook for, make a meal for, wine and dine
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    1. 1.1[no object] (especially of an animal or baby) take food; eat something.
      ‘morays emerge at night to feed’
      • ‘When I went to visit them Dang was looking extremely pleased with herself and the puppies were feeding contentedly.’
      • ‘He had stopped for a while in a glade as the horse fed.’
      • ‘But he was determined the foxes should feed in their garden too.’
      • ‘The pannage system is also still used in some parts of Spain and Portugal, where the lean Iberian pig feeds in woods and produces a particularly fine kind of ham.’
      • ‘There is not much information available about where the birds are feeding and their nesting habitat closer to the marsh.’
      • ‘You can tell your baby is feeding well if she is gaining enough weight.’
      • ‘Perhaps because the sharks feed at night, the fish had nothing to fear during the day.’
      • ‘We heard a branch breaking on our right and saw a cow but then the tracker heard an elephant feeding about 100 meters up.’
      • ‘This is land where sheep and cattle feed.’
      • ‘Down in the hollow just north of me are three deer feeding along the field edge.’
      • ‘Maybe one of the night creatures were feeding in the woods and the girl had just found out what they were or had just been bitten.’
      • ‘Many mothers can experience discomfort and often wonder whether their babies are feeding correctly.’
      • ‘Not long after this, at about noon, we heard the elephants feeding in front, and we crept forward.’
      • ‘In heat and humidity strong enough to hatch eggs, they sit on the hard stone floor cradling infants with flies feeding from the corners of their eyes.’
      • ‘In between, delegates visited Okupuka Ranch for a game drive to watch lions feeding.’
      • ‘I saw this bird feeding, its head concentrated on the bough of a beech tree.’
      graze, browse, crop, pasture, ruminate
      eat, take nourishment, partake of food, consume food, devour food, have a meal
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Provide an adequate supply of food for.
      ‘the island's simple agriculture could hardly feed its inhabitants’
      • ‘Conventional wisdom holds that the country is looking for aid to help feed its starving population.’
      • ‘How would you feed everyone, provide water, medications, etc.?’
      • ‘The main economic challenge for the new state was to create an agriculture and economy that would feed the population and provide it with the wherewithal to defend the country against military attacks.’
      • ‘And as for the purchase of local goods and supplies, this country can't even make enough food to feed itself, never mind the tourists.’
      • ‘We could hardly afford to feed ourselves, let alone contribute to some dude's retirement fund.’
      • ‘It is said that genetically modified foods will ensure that the entire world can be fed adequately and nutritiously.’
      • ‘Right now, the program provides enough food to feed the country's people.’
      • ‘In other words, agriculture provided labour for the new factories in the towns and, eventually, food supplies to feed the new industrial working class.’
      • ‘The Chinese government has also provided assistance to help feed the hungry in Asia and in Africa.’
      • ‘The crops should have provided enough to feed the 65-year-old woman and her 18-year-old grandson.’
      • ‘There are numerous better ways to help feed the world's hungry, even in crisis situations.’
      • ‘More than £1.5 billion has been spent by the UN on housing and feeding them, mainly provided by Western nations.’
      • ‘A distraught York mother says she has no idea how she will feed her family over Easter after tax credits chaos left her almost penniless.’
      • ‘The conventional wisdom is that, in order to increase food supply to feed the hungry of the world, we need to redouble efforts to modernize agriculture.’
      • ‘Over 65 million people can now hardly feed themselves, while the government spends billions on arms.’
      • ‘Today, we need to fight at two ends of the spectrum - feeding the millions and ensuring what we feed them is nutritionally adequate.’
      nurture, nourish, give food to, provide board for
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    3. 1.3feed on/off[no object] Derive regular nourishment from (a particular substance)
      ‘the bird feeds on cliff-top vegetation’
      figurative ‘his powerful mind fed off political discussion’
      • ‘All feed primarily on plant material, either fruit, nectar or pollen.’
      • ‘The panic about a potential bird flu pandemic also feeds off the constant diet of food scare stories that we have been force-fed for years.’
      • ‘This species of shark feeds primarily on benthic (bottom-dwelling) invertebrates.’
      • ‘It is not hard to predict that, under such conditions, the political parties that feed off hatred of foreigners and racism will flourish.’
      • ‘I therefore abandoned my picnic lunch and watched birds and squirrels feeding on a slab of Christmas cake and lots of sandwiches.’
      • ‘Little owls tend to feed on insects although they will take small birds and mammals when they are hungry.’
      • ‘One political party feeds off the promises of the other, and both candidates have compromised their principles to the point that the only difference between them is in the details.’
      • ‘Many fungi are parastitic, feeding on living organisms without killing them.’
      • ‘The banded coral shrimp feeds on parasites that live on reef fish.’
      • ‘This shark feeds primarily on bony fishes such as parrot, trigger, squirrel, surgeon, damsel and goat fishes as well as eels.’
      • ‘Bald eagles feed primarily on marine mammals and fish and would not be a threat to the foxes.’
      • ‘For example, the cassowary (a large flightless bird) feeds on bright blue and red fruit.’
      • ‘His depression constantly occupies a corner of his mind, feeding off his insecurities and frustrations and enveloping him when he least expects it.’
      • ‘The birds will swoop in front of cars to feed on the insects attracted by the headlights.’
      • ‘The bird usually feeds on shrimps and larvae using its huge bill to sieve food from water.’
      • ‘Birds should also be encouraged to feed on caterpillars, slugs and other pests.’
      • ‘These may feed on different substances and so be able to coexist, or they may compete for the same substance.’
      • ‘Alien plants often don't attract insects, which means there is nothing for birds to feed on.’
      • ‘This bird is quite common in the urban areas where it feeds on refuse and carrions, and hence its dirty reputation.’
      • ‘The snail lives around the flushes of natural springs in the Sand Dale area, where it feeds on the lush vegetation.’
      live on, live off, exist on, subsist on, rely for nourishment on, depend on, thrive on
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    4. 1.4 Encourage the growth of.
      ‘I could feed my melancholy by reading Romantic poetry’
      • ‘Hate is fed by ignorance and incompetence.’
      • ‘Like all industry chiefs, Oxburgh has a blind spot that conveniently overlooks how state-corporate power is relentlessly feeding a suicidal system of globalisation.’
      • ‘The resulting rapid growth further fed the ambitions of the ‘new society’.’
      • ‘The release of such material fed speculation that he was out to destroy the president.’
      • ‘Yet the very thing that nurtures our growth also feeds our discontent.’
      • ‘This cheap and readily available protection encourages speculation, which feeds the boom.’
      • ‘We know music enriches the human spirit, feeds the emotions and provides solace, peace, beauty and passion to our inner being.’
      • ‘As it is, KPL has developed a remarkably effective mechanism for feeding growth with new talent.’
      • ‘Behind the scenes the focus is on developing the indigenous skills base to feed the future growth of the electronic design sector in Scotland.’
      • ‘Efforts to shut down dangerous coal mines have been complicated by the country's demands for power to feed its booming economy.’
      • ‘Today's crude oil prices reflect nothing more than a market bubble fed by speculation and unwarranted fear.’
      • ‘A leader must harness and nurture that drive, feed it, and encourage it to grow.’
      • ‘The Olympics surge is feeding the economic growth process at the moment, particularly in Sydney, but this is by its very nature temporary.’
      • ‘Travel became glamorous and fast, entertainment a mass industry and advertising spending mushroomed to feed the growth in consumerism.’
      • ‘I've learned that it's more important to hire people who stand behind your core values than it is to feed a growth rate with people who don't share those values.’
      • ‘The corollary then would be that the rest are simply dreamers, but what's wrong with providing readers with material to feed those dreams?’
      • ‘The economic growth, which in turn has fed the growth of motorised traffic, has led to the inevitable problems associated with road traffic in built-up areas.’
      strengthen, fortify, support, bolster, reinforce, boost, augment, supplement, add to, add fuel to, fuel, encourage, gratify, minister to
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    5. 1.5 Give fertilizer to (a plant)
      • ‘Excess nutrients from sewage or fertilizers flow into coastal waters, feeding algae blooms that block sunlight and smother corals.’
      • ‘In return, the plants' roots release carbohydrates to feed the fungi.’
      • ‘Organic farming aims at first feeding the soil before feeding the crop as opposed to conventional methods which aims at directly feeding the crop and denying the soil its nutrition.’
      • ‘In the use of the nutrients that feed our crops, China is now far and away the world leader.’
      • ‘The elements and the wood of the tree have fed the lichens and mosses.’
      • ‘Once the plants die, they release the fixed nitrogen to feed the subsequent crop.’
      • ‘Alfalfa meal and recycled sludge feed the flowers.’
      • ‘Rain falling on the compost will feed the plants.’
      • ‘Slate has been used in the region for hundreds of years as a building material, and where it has not been present in sufficient quantity in the soil it has been added to feed the vine with minerals and to retain warmth.’
      • ‘After they take off, Betty feeds her plants liquid fertilizer with a teaspoon of gelatin powder mixed into each gallon.’
      • ‘As long as the tree is fed regularly, such soils shouldn't be a problem.’
      • ‘Speaking of fertilizer, you can use a granular or water soluble fertilizer to feed your hungry plants.’
      • ‘The proper time to feed grass is in the fall, when the roots that will sustain the plants through the following summer are actively growing.’
      • ‘They analyze the soil, figuring out how to augment nutrients to feed the vines.’
      • ‘The land in all its splendour was rich and the dark red soil held all the rain and mist which seeped into the ground feeding the crops that grew in abundance.’
      • ‘Fall is the preferred time for feeding northern grasses and midspring for southern ones.’
      • ‘Their droppings feed the fungus in the ground and can also be a source of infection for people.’
      • ‘He hasn't fed his bent grass lawn in 10 years, and he says it looks fine.’
      • ‘He said the compost in turn then goes to feed the flowers around the school.’
      add fertilizer to, enrich with fertilizer, mulch, compost, manure, dung, dress, top-dress
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    6. 1.6 Put fuel on (a fire)
      • ‘If oxygen feeds fire and hydrogen is explosive, then why isn't water combustible?’
      • ‘But when the door is opened and oxygen again feeds the fire, flames can suddenly erupt again.’
      • ‘You have to stoke the body the same way you would feed a fire.’
      • ‘They say on April 28 the fire was fed by files in a records room with a wooden floor.’
      • ‘Anything to save you some energy must be good, I can't imagine how difficult it must be with ME and having to feed a coal fire all the time.’
      • ‘In their effort to stay warm, they kept their fireplace ablaze by burning library books, feeding the fire continually for that much needed warmth.’
      • ‘Grabbing an old paperback dictionary she'd been using to keep her desk legs balanced, she ripped pages out to feed the fire.’
      • ‘In My Childhood, one of the earliest moments sees Jamie coming home with only four pieces of coal with which to feed the fire.’
      • ‘I griped the glass in my hand and then I threw it into the flames, letting it feed the enraged fire.’
      • ‘Judging exactly how much wood to feed a fire is not always easy even for a clear-headed person but it is especially difficult for someone who is intoxicated.’
      • ‘This fortunate outcome most likely stems form the absence of fuel to explode and feed a post-crash fire.’
      • ‘So after feeding the fire they both fell asleep.’
      • ‘Sure enough, underneath the grill inside the restaurant, sacks of mesquite charcoal stand ready to feed the open fire.’
      • ‘I got up and went over to feed the dying fire in the fireplace before returning to my seat.’
      • ‘He collected some driftwood to feed the fire he was to make.’
      • ‘Gas used for household heating and lighting merely fed the fire.’
      • ‘Sub-officer Gary Hastings said that oil and fuel in the vehicles was pooling at the base of the fire and feeding the flames.’
      • ‘Thick smoke choked its capital, Sydney, population 4 million, as strong winds fed the fires surrounding it.’
      • ‘Once ignited, the updraft of air within the flue will feed this chimney fire, causing it to grow rapidly and producing very high temperatures.’
      • ‘At least three people died in a huge fire fed by shoes.’
  • 2Supply (a machine) with material, power, or other things necessary for its operation.

    ‘the programs are fed into the computer’
    • ‘On the prepack line, a roll of pouches is fed into the filling machine, which blows each pouch open with a puff of air.’
    • ‘Since the details of the building are fed into the machine, the computer also offers tips on the estimated cost and the quantity of paint required for the job.’
    • ‘As they watched, one of the players shambled over to the jukebox and fed a handful of coins into it.’
    • ‘Pallissaro fed a few more coins into the ravenous meter until it showed a fourteen pounds credit.’
    • ‘Those that are sealed and returned will be fed into the scanning machines starting Friday, she said.’
    • ‘The sheets are fed into the machine and then bent to the desired angle, leaving a sharp and accurate crease in the metal.’
    • ‘Once inside the factory, the flax was fed into a stripping machine, which took all the green covering off the fibre and left it bare.’
    • ‘The data is fed into computers to create extremely accurate maps.’
    • ‘To prevent cutter wear, fresh wire is continuously fed into the machine.’
    • ‘Some counties, including Bay County, use paper ballots that are fed into an optical scanner, so a recount is possible if there are questions.’
    • ‘The image is fed into the computer, which will recognise their faces from any of the 300 cameras in the CCTV scheme.’
    • ‘I wouldn't want to live under any other arrangement, but it only can only create alloys are as good or bad as the raw ore that's fed into the smelter.’
    • ‘As he fed coins into it and peered confused into the handset, I tried to help.’
    • ‘She sings, it is fed into a machine and it emerges like a string of sausages - processed and bland.’
    • ‘One million pages of documents relating to his career have been fed into high-tech systems installed for the inquiry, which is being held in Manchester Town Hall.’
    • ‘The labels are fed into the labeling machine, which has a spinning device that rolls glue onto the labels and then sticks them to the bottles as they pass by.’
    • ‘The resulting images are then fed into a computer, which uses them to create ‘virtual’ actors who can be placed in any situation that the Wachowskis want them in.’
    • ‘The ballots were fed into another machine for tabulation.’
    • ‘This would then be fed into ACR's machine, which can create more precise shapes than most prototypers.’
    • ‘At Tori & Shari, however, any cost adjustments brought about by, say, small mackerel hauls were simply fed into the computer.’
    • ‘Postmortem details from victims, such as dental structure and DNA samples, are being fed into the computer.’
    1. 2.1[with two objects] Supply (someone) with (information, ideas, etc.)
      ‘I think he is feeding his old employer commercial secrets’
      • ‘A keeper threw in huge slabs of raw meat, and the beasts tore them apart in front of us, while we were fed interesting titbits of information by another keeper.’
      • ‘Journalists and revolutionists worked hand in hand to expose the injustices of the Spaniards, and fed the people with ideas of democracy.’
      • ‘Ben has been feeding me information for weeks.’
      • ‘I think maybe he could have vetted the information better, but I think he was fed bad information with regard to the weapons of mass destruction.’
      • ‘Before he started Graham explained that he didn't want me to feed him information or to completely clam up but to answer yes or no if asked a question.’
      • ‘We are fed endless information about them in the tabloid press, how drunk they were last night, what they were wearing, and what they think.’
      • ‘We do know that the US feed him propaganda material because he wrote that he was shown a picture of me in a newspaper and that I looked really stressed.’
      • ‘Your statement was patently ridiculous, and I can't help but wonder who fed you such information.’
      • ‘But we're not fed information, this is not Communist Russia, we have to do independent journalism.’
      • ‘Two days before the trial, he tried to get a former employer to feed him information so he could sell himself to the jury as an international fence and get a lesser sentence.’
      • ‘His performance is only as good as the quality of the information he receives, so to improve his performance, we only have to feed him better information.’
      • ‘The more information you feed your children, the more alert they'll be when the time comes for them to use it.’
      • ‘At Dawson's trial, Owen repeated the detailed information that Pollard fed him earlier.’
      • ‘By deceiving the attacker, the defender feeds him false information and forces him to waste time in fruitless assaults, thereby blunting future attacks.’
      • ‘I have a group of people working for me who do nothing but examine other industries, and they have been feeding me information about cinema owners' profit and loss accounts.’
      • ‘Prospective candidates are fed misleading information about the organization to discourage them from pursuing their application.’
      • ‘Instead of information, he feeds us propaganda that, again and again, we later find out to be lies.’
      • ‘Close aides of the president have denied feeding him wrong information resulting in his controversial statements or policies.’
      • ‘Jackson had been able to keep Smith happy by feeding him information.’
      • ‘Are the press also to blame for feeding us this information, or do we have a right to know?’
      supply, provide, give, deliver, present, furnish, issue, impart, sell
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    2. 2.2 Supply water to (a body of water)
      ‘the pond is fed by a small stream’
      [no object] ‘water feeds into the lower pool’
    3. 2.3 Insert further coins into (a meter) to extend the time for which it operates.
      • ‘A drunk might steal shillings set aside to feed the gas meter.’
      • ‘But the idea of a teenage mother who cannot wash her child in warm water because she hasn't got the money to feed the meter really got to me.’
      • ‘Hunched in carrels, they would often forget to feed the meters where their minivans were parked.’
      • ‘Whoever it was that made the call must have seen me leave the building to feed that parking meter.’
      • ‘Crowley asked if he himself would have to leave his office every hour to feed the meter.’
      • ‘Unless they have a disabled badge, motorists will now be forced to leave short-stay car parks after three hours to stop them returning at three-hour intervals to feed the meter and save cash.’
      • ‘They can run errands worth various numbers of points, but they must make time for these errands by feeding their meter.’
      • ‘Jumping out of the car - and forgetting to feed the meter - she heads toward the heart of the market, most of which features organic produce.’
      • ‘I remember one cold winter weekend when I was alone in the flat with no money to feed the electricity meter.’
      • ‘Shaggy parked there on a recent visit and went to feed the meter.’
      • ‘It happened so fast I actually missed her arrival thanks to a four-minute sprint to feed the parking meter.’
      • ‘Businesses have complained they are being forced to carry unrealistic floats in their tills to keep up with customers' demand for change to feed the meters.’
      • ‘Both get your hair styled, and while she has her makeup tweaked, you can go and feed the meter.’
      • ‘I went to try and feed the meter, but it had a case of indigestion.’
      • ‘Remember when the mobile Internet was going to reshape the economic order, and we'd all brandish our phones to watch videos and feed parking meters?’
      • ‘It needn't be complicated: you can hold the door for someone or feed a meter that's about to expire.’
      • ‘All in all, not a cheerful day except for the one time when I exchanged a few words with a woman in the carpark, she seeking ten pence coins to feed the meter.’
      • ‘Alfred said the council should have placed notices warning people not to feed the meters during the truce.’
      • ‘The Parking Meter bonus brings five free spins, and when coins appear on the reels to feed the meters, bonuses multiply.’
      • ‘Manfred only feeds the meters if people are going to be booked and estimates he spends up to $3 a day.’
    4. 2.4[with two objects] Prompt (an actor) with (a line)
      ‘you were still in the wings feeding Micky his lines’
      • ‘Notice the twitchy, disoriented candidate running for re-election who has to be fed lines.’
      • ‘Ross isn't coming to the festival this year, but his shows feel like fan club gigs with audience members feeding the comic lines.’
      • ‘Terry Taylor helps feed me lines over the headsets.’
      • ‘So, via a very unique performance style, Magnani was fed her lines by a dialogue coach, and she mimicked the sounds she heard.’
      • ‘Now there is evidence that he may have been - in an electronic way - by having cues and lines fed to him through a hidden high-tech earpiece.’
      • ‘If he's being fed lines in an earphone, I'd expect that he should have to listen to a longer stretch of prompt before launching into a longer phrase.’
      remind, cue, give someone a cue, help out, coach, feed
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    5. 2.5 (in ball games) pass (the ball) to a player.
      ‘he took the ball and fed Salley’
      • ‘They don't have that one guy to keep feeding the ball in the most crucial moments.’
      • ‘From the clearance by Will Driver, Oliver Moulton fed the ball to Fred Atkinson who was inches wide with a well struck effort.’
      • ‘He can feed the ball around the pitch and he has a wicked strike on him.’
      • ‘The Pistons went to ridiculous lengths to feed the ball to Stackhouse.’
      • ‘The ball was fed to Kelley who crashed through four tackles before being somewhat harshly adjudged to have used his elbow in fending off the fifth.’
      • ‘Kearney, who was looking sharp again, combined with Windass on the left touchline before feeding the ball into Dele Adebola in the Hull penalty area.’
      • ‘Five minutes later Carelse fed the ball to Kasinauyo, who scored from an acute angle to seal the game in the dying minutes.’
      • ‘With the ball, there's no question what Marty Schottenheimer wants to do: feed the ball to LaDainian Tomlinson and let him run.’
      • ‘Near half-time Pool's Martin Roberts broke away and fed the ball out to the right.’
      • ‘Robbie Painter fed the loose ball to Paul Helliwell, but Boswell got a firm hand to his cross and deflected the ball away.’
      • ‘One thing that really helps is if a parent is willing to share time with them even if nothing more than feeding the ball for shooting practice.’
      • ‘The ball was fed to Nazha and he fired in a shot from six yards.’
      • ‘Twenty minutes later Erwin Koeman fed a long ball into Van Basten from the left, the unfortunate Kohler was penalised and thus began Holland's happy ending.’
      • ‘Catherine French and Rachel Doherty worked hard up front and Kate Bradley and Sarah Male were able to continually feed balls through to them.’
      • ‘He can kick with both feet, and does some super brilliant runs, pushing forward, making space so that he can then feed the ball through to those willing to take it.’
      • ‘Seedorf, though, was beginning to exert a strong influence on the Dutch, dropping off the front players, feeding the ball into them and making himself space to control return passes.’
      • ‘The Longhorns need somebody to feed the ball to, and Tucker has skill and experience.’
      • ‘He's the absolute best I've ever seen at feeding the ball to the pitcher at the bag.’
      • ‘Guards Timmy Bowers and Gary Ervin will be more effective feeding the ball inside and keeping defenses honest on the perimeter.’
      • ‘Instead, Krenzel operated on smarts and savvy, avoiding the mistake and feeding the ball to those hard-charging running backs.’
    6. 2.6US Distribute (a broadcast) to local television or radio stations via satellite or network.
      ‘programs that the national networks feed to local stations’
      • ‘A helicopter follows the peloton, feeding overhead shots to broadcast producers in satellite vans parked at the end of the stage.’
      • ‘I am now at the television station, where we have been feeding video to CNN right before the storm and just as it was coming over.’
      • ‘This module could be a broadcast facility, feeding news, entertainment, and educational markets with pictures and happenings from space.’
      • ‘And it has been furnished with hundreds of computers, where local and foreign correspondents feed their stories to newsrooms across the world.’
      • ‘The news will be fed to local BBC and commercial radio stations to keep motorists up to speed with the latest traffic flows.’
      • ‘If local stations could preempt what was being fed from New York and Los Angeles, then programming could be more reflective of family values.’
      • ‘When CNN began, the networks thought they have to feed all their stuff to their own local stations to stay competitive with you.’
  • 3Cause to move gradually and steadily, typically through a confined space.

    ‘make holes through which to feed the cables’
    • ‘It was the conduit for feeding the cable to the sea-bed.’
    • ‘Sanders does not use intermediate supports as his yarder works on an endless running line that is fed around two capstan wheels.’
    • ‘I attached the stand, feeding the VGA cable through the appropriate slot, then looked for the power socket.’
    • ‘The public are seeing some very skilful engineering to directly drill under the beck and feed the cables through.’
    • ‘Consultant cardiologist Dr Peter Clarkson said a coronary angiography involved a small tube being fed into the patient's heart via an artery in the leg.’
    • ‘The fountain pen, equipped with a reusable cartridge for holding a large supply of ink to be steadily fed to the nib, was a late 19c advance on the basic metal-nibbed pen.’


  • 1An act of giving food, especially to animals or a baby, or of having food given to one.

    ‘I've just given the horse her feed’
    • ‘The first things to try are offering your baby a feed and checking whether he needs a nappy change.’
    • ‘She told Sheffield's Medico-Legal centre her baby vomited twice after taking her morning feed.’
    • ‘All too often tube feeds and supplements are used for patients who are reluctant to feed because they are quicker.’
    • ‘If you're making up an eight ounce bottle, for example, you could have four ounces of cooled boiled water in the fridge, then add four ounces of boiling water when your baby needs a feed.’
    • ‘She helped me position the babies for their first feeds.’
    • ‘Mr Spencer pointed out that in both cases the babies had taken a feed shortly before their death.’
    • ‘Of the patients for whom tube feeds were held for an hour, 11 samples were inaccurate and 17 were accurate.’
    • ‘Arkle Chase was now the animal whose every feed, breath and step I'll be checking on between now and March 13.’
    • ‘At the 4am feed, I take the baby into the bed with me and feed him lying down.’
    • ‘Very preterm infants, who often have relatively delayed gastric emptying and intestinal peristalsis, may be slow to tolerate the introduction of gastric tube feeds.’
    • ‘When women choose to breastfeed they shouldn't have to stay at home all day because their baby will need a feed.’
    • ‘It is an extremely sad society if a mother has to dash off to sit in the toilet every time her baby needs a feed.’
    • ‘Aqua Cat was at one of its permanent moorings, near to another mooring where the itinerary called for regularly staged shark feeds.’
    • ‘Many babies drift off to sleep during a feed, but as your baby grows, you need to teach him how to fall asleep without this.’
    1. 1.1informal A meal.
      ‘how 'bout I fix up a nice hot feed?’
      • ‘A hot shower, a feed of black pudding, a few pints and a big steak, together with a showing of the Peru videos, and what more could a person want.’
      • ‘They were not big fish but all legal and a top feed.’
      • ‘There is a fair chance that if you fish at these times around Ballina, Evans Head or Brunswick Heads, you should be able to catch a nice feed.’
      • ‘It stated light buffet on the tickets, if that was a light buffet what on earth is a big feed in the Feehan household.’
      • ‘With a table at the Lord Halifax-owned pub booked, we made sure we were geared up for a big feed - and we were not disappointed.’
      • ‘We agreed on Pizza Hut where we had a big feed of cheesy garlic bread and pizza (obviously).’
      • ‘Our nation is weaker for a game that can't supply a decent feed and shuns a fan's god-given right to select, chill and transport his own Frosties.’
      • ‘Every one in this hut has had parcels so we have been having great feeds & suppers.’
      • ‘Any time he trundles back home to St. Helens (down Mersey way) he nips in his local eatery for a slap-up feed and more gossip than Heat themed chain of hairdressers.’
      • ‘One of the main reasons why I do, apart from the big feed and plenty of socialising is that the Festive Period means lashings and lashings of Racing.’
      • ‘For most people, a big feed of lobster is a special treat.’
      • ‘I remembered this and asked if the camel had eaten barley and was told he got loose and ate a big feed.’
      • ‘That's a great price for a big feed and all steak fans around York should consider a trip to sample this restaurant's speciality.’
      • ‘However, they were a nice feed and it is hard to beat filleted, fresh fish.’
      • ‘Fishing is about getting yourself a nice feed, but in this day and age we need to learn to release our excess fish.’
      • ‘Any parent stumbling across the star would invite him for Sunday lunch for a good feed and slip him 20 quid towards a new jacket.’
      meal, lunch, dinner, supper, repast
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Food for domestic animals.
      ‘the crops are grown for animal feed’
      ‘cow feed’
      • ‘The disease spreads when cows ingest animal feed made with parts from dead animals.’
      • ‘BSE is not a contagious disease but occurs when cows eat feed that contains infected animal products.’
      • ‘Both adults and larvae consume poultry feed in amounts costly to the producer.’
      • ‘In leaf vacuoles, nitrate can accumulate to high levels, which is undesirable if vegetative plant parts are used for food or animal feed.’
      • ‘Until now the only way to enrich livestock with these fatty acids was to supplement their feed with expensive fish meal, Kang explains.’
      • ‘The low-quality dates and the date pits are used as animal feed for cows and sheep.’
      • ‘In Ireland grass is the cheapest animal feed and rates nutritionally among the best food sources for cows.’
      • ‘He kills wildlife - birds, deer, kangaroo, and all kinds of cat, rabbits, mice and foxes - by the million to protect his domestic animals and their feed.’
      • ‘The problem is that, here in the United States, animal feed is still fed back to livestock.’
      • ‘It is now cultivated for forage feed, but you can purchase triticale from health food shops.’
      • ‘‘The cost of producing feed to that cow has to drop from that of a total mixed ration’ he says.’
      • ‘It was a common ration, so some animals consumed the feed differently than their normal ration.’
      • ‘Farmers fed expensive concentrate feed to have cattle fit in July and August.’
      • ‘She says the government needs to ban byproducts from cattle and similar animals from all livestock feed.’
      • ‘Some 30,000 acres in northeast Colorado have been transitioned to provide organic feed for the dairy.’
      • ‘Finally, demand for organic animal feed is growing.’
      • ‘Cattle producers would use the information to select cows that require less feed.’
      • ‘Keller adds soybean meal and manmade supplements to the feed.’
      • ‘The decision to permit imports of GM animal feed by the EU is after rigorous testing over many years.’
      • ‘Supplements of bacteria types or compounds that inhibit methane production could be placed in cow feed to reduce methane production.’
      fodder, food, foodstuff, forage, pasturage, herbage, silage
      View synonyms
  • 2A device or conduit for supplying material to a machine.

    ‘the plotter has a continuous paper feed’
    • ‘I wrote my name on a blank sheet of notebook paper, and tried to push it into the shredder, but I couldn't quite line the paper up with the feed.’
    • ‘These parameters are used by the system controller to determine the rotational speed and the vertical feed of the machine spindle.’
    • ‘This printer provides a standard paper tray plus a 24 inch-wide paper manual feed.’
    • ‘The largest is the drawer machine which has 4 feeds and knits from four bobbins.’
    • ‘Additional standpipe feeds for the water sprinkler system were installed.’
    • ‘It appears that there is a small pump or some type of device that controls the water feeds for both of the items.’
    1. 2.1 The supply of raw material to a machine or device.
      [as modifier] ‘a feed pipe’
      • ‘Iron bed rollers were supplied on the hand feed machine.’
      • ‘Shade and water misters were provided over partial locations along the feed line.’
      • ‘The printer takes only 250 sheets of letter paper at a time, with legal paper usable only via its manual feed front paper slot.’
      • ‘The rubber grinding machine includes a feed tube, a grinding module, a conveyor, a screening module and a vacuum system.’
      • ‘In new construction, there is no need for a flush valve, sensor or a water feed line for the urinals.’
      • ‘Now that we've seen the speeds and feeds, let's move on to performance.’
    2. 2.2 A broadcast distributed by satellite or network from a central source to a large number of radio or television stations.
      ‘a satellite feed from Washington’
      • ‘Luckily, someone who wants to produce a bare-bones syndication feed does not need to work very hard.’
      • ‘He also lets network crews jockey for space and provides a video feed to broadcasters worldwide.’
      • ‘The cameras would be unobtrusive and broadcasters would co-operate on feeds from the proceedings.’
      • ‘News chiefs from ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox and NBC television networks pledged to vet incoming feeds and not broadcast them live.’
      • ‘Combined with a Tivo-type pvr, the mobile phone will just scoop news and other relevant broadcast feeds for your supreme convenience.’
      • ‘The hourly news bulletins on weekdays are feeds from Independent Radio News.’
      • ‘The changes will extend to working with CBS affiliates and the CBS network to receive national feeds of stories of interest to the black community.’
      • ‘With live video feeds via satellite to a global market, much of the ugliness of war is brought into homes almost everywhere.’
      • ‘Other channels are audio feeds of television stations.’
      • ‘The daily news feed gives the latest technology stories that affect your career and working life.’
      • ‘A live feed will be broadcast from San Diego to Iraq and Afghanistan.’
      • ‘Since access is extremely limited, they'll have to render from international broadcast feeds in lieu of taking their own video.’
      • ‘It has feeds from tv and radio media sources around the world.’
      • ‘You cannot set up in a stadium with a live feed without a mobile broadcast unit, so I assume there's one around the corner.’
      • ‘We've been running updates on it for a few days off the NBC feed.’
      • ‘Instead there will be a computer receiving and broadcasting the feed from some undisclosed location in the ether.’
      • ‘TV will take the video feed and Radio can extract the sound.’
      • ‘The live feed was also broadcast globally by the Sirius satellite radio network.’
      • ‘The show is broadcast on the ABC radio feed and can be heard in Kansas City and Knoxville, among other place.’
      • ‘Three TV channels broadcast the same feed - in Thai language only.’
      broadcast, transmission, programme, communication, telecast, show, feed, livestream
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3Computing A facility for notifying the user of a blog or other frequently updated website that new content has been added.
      ‘most blogs and news sites offer RSS feeds of their latest content’
      • ‘You can opt to customize how your feeds appear, display images in feeds, view article tags, among other things.’
      • ‘I thus can repeat the above commands with the syndication feed from my Weblog.’
      • ‘Here are some easy directions for adding a feed to your site.’
      • ‘Market penetration from RSS feeds could easily outdo Google's popular Adsense advertising medium.’
      • ‘It certainly can be a possible way of distributing malicious code over the internet to the subscribers of the RSS feed.’
      • ‘The impact of this distribution method would be related to the popularity of the feed.’
      • ‘We're proud to say that the Desktop Sidebar comes included with The Register RSS feed.’
      • ‘To keep informed about the most prevalent hoaxes, you can add a free Sophos information feed to your own website or intranet.’
      • ‘At the beginning of this week I had 310 feeds showing around 25,000 unread posts.’
      • ‘The only software I couldn't find that satisfied me was a good RSS reader for news feeds.’
      • ‘The newspaper's content flow thus would be a flow of many Atom feeds into a single, final feed representing the newspaper itself.’
      • ‘There are a number of affiliates who are successfully using data feeds.’
      • ‘You can even set a refresh rate based on the individual feed.’
      • ‘You can also opt to visit some web sites that let you search for a wide variety of feeds.’
      • ‘At this point, you should see your feed at the bottom of the page.’
      • ‘For readers that had already subscribed to a blog with the unspliced feed, there was little incentive to switch.’
      • ‘The Learning Channel substituted a BBC television news feed for its own programming.’
      • ‘The news feed, now considered the central selling point of the site, was reintroduced with greater controls.’
      • ‘All I'm doing is changing my Twitter feed.’
      • ‘You can view feeds individually, or group them into convenient categories.’
  • 3A line or prompt given to an actor on stage.

    • ‘Simon needed our kid to speak up and give him the feed line of ‘no’ so he could deliver his line and then subsequent cheap shot.’
    1. 3.1 An actor who provides a feed to a fellow performer.
      • ‘I don't count - I'm only a feed.’


  • off one's feed

    • informal Having no appetite.

      • ‘I know when you're off your feed and I've had a few babies myself.’
      • ‘She said no and I went completely off my feed for a long time and moped around for ages.’
      • ‘She has been what my late father would call ‘off her feed’ for the past couple of days but fairly even-tempered.’
      • ‘Otherwise, watching them might have put him off his feed.’
      • ‘Even if I haven't had any of it, the very thought is almost enough to put me off my feed.’
      • ‘It's the near-flippant attitude towards them in the film that puts me off my feed a bit.’
      • ‘Sometimes when I'm ‘off my feed’ and not feeling up to polite society it's better for me to have something in my hands.’
      • ‘That undertone in the woman's voice put Lee off his feed instantly.’
      • ‘You complained about the ubiquity of music in some restaurants, as if the mere presence of a cover band was enough to put you off your feed.’
      • ‘I can understand them not wanting people looking at the website in there, as it might put other customers off their feed.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • feed back

    • 1(of a response) influence the development of the thing that has given rise to it.

      ‘what the audience tells me feeds back into my work’
      • ‘Please read and respond, I really like feed back!’
      • ‘A system that feeds back information to hospital doctors about the outcomes for each of their patients is to be introduced across Scotland over the next two to three years.’
      • ‘In turn these workers can feed back on and influence these movements.’
      • ‘Consumers also play a role in the innovation process of creative industries by their willingness to pay for a new style, which feeds back to influence production and distribution structures.’
      • ‘Based on this feed back and a low response rate, this item was revised for the third mailing.’
      • ‘Next, you will need to practice diligently a number of exercise techniques to get feed back while developing these abilities.’
      • ‘Immediate feed back from constituents is another advantage of this service.’
      • ‘The report states that once research findings are established, principal investigators are responsible for feeding back findings to participants or their representatives promptly and appropriately.’
      • ‘Equally important is how the results of those ‘failures’ are fed back into further theory development.’
      • ‘We did not feed back to respondents their previous score.’
    • 2(of an electrical or other system) produce feedback.

      • ‘It's the same thing that makes an electric guitar feed back.’
      • ‘It has pickups on it - when I turn up my amp, it'll feed back.’


Old English fēdan (verb); related to food.