verb (used without object)
- to exist; continue in existence.
- to remain alive; live, as on food, resources, etc.
- to have existence in, or by reason of, something.
- to reside, lie, or consist (usually followed by in).
- to have timeless or abstract existence, as a number, relation, etc.
- to have existence, especially independent existence.
verb (used with object)
- to provide sustenance or support for; maintain.
verb (mainly intr)
- (often foll by on) to be sustained; manage to liveto subsist on milk
- to continue in existence
- (foll by in) to lie or reside by virtue (of); consist
- to exist as a concept or relation rather than a fact
- to be conceivable
- (tr) obsolete to provide with support
v.1540s, “to exist,” from Latin subsistere “to stand still or firm,” (see subsistence). Meaning “to support oneself” (in a certain way) is from 1640s. Related: Subsisted; subsisting.