(1)   Capable of erupting
"A live volcano"
"The volcano is very much alive"
(2)   Possessing life
"The happiest person alive"
"The nerve is alive"
"Doctors are working hard to keep him alive"
"Burned alive"
"A live canary"
(3)   Exerting force or containing energy
"Live coals"
"Tossed a live cigarette out the window"
"Got a shock from a live wire"
"Live ore is unmined ore"
"A live bomb"
"A live ball is one in play"
(4)   Charged or energized with electricity
"A hot wire"
"A live wire"
(5)   Of current relevance
"A live issue"
"Still a live option"
(6)   In current use or ready for use
"Live copy is ready to be set in type or already set but not yet proofread"
(7)   Abounding with life and energy
"The club members are a really live bunch"
(8)   Elastic; rebounds readily
"Clean bouncy hair"
"A lively tennis ball"
"As resilient as seasoned hickory"
"Springy turf"
(9)   Actually being performed at the time of hearing or viewing
"A live television program"
"Brought to you live from Lincoln Center"
"Live entertainment involves performers actually in the physical presence of a live audience"
(10)   Charged with an explosive
"Live ammunition"
"A live bomb"


(11)   Not recorded
"The opera was broadcast live"


(12)   Have firsthand knowledge of states, situations, emotions, or sensations
"I know the feeling!"
"Have you ever known hunger?"
"I have lived a kind of hell when I was a drug addict"
"The holocaust survivors have lived a nightmare"
"I lived through two divorces"
(13)   Have life, be alive
"Our great leader is no more"
"My grandfather lived until the end of war"
(14)   Lead a certain kind of life; live in a certain style
"We had to live frugally after the war"
(15)   Pursue a positive and satisfying existence
"You must accept yourself and others if you really want to live"
(16)   Support oneself
"He could barely exist on such a low wage"
"Can you live on $2000 a month in New York City?"
"Many people in the world have to subsist on $1 a day"
(17)   Continue to live; endure or last
"We went without water and food for 3 days"
"These superstitions survive in the backwaters of America"
"The race car driver lived through several very serious accidents"
"How long can a person last without food and water?"
(18)   Inhabit or live in
"People lived in Africa millions of years ago"
"The people inhabited the islands that are now deserted"
"This kind of fish dwells near the bottom of the ocean"


  1. To be alive; to have life.
    He's not expected to live for more than a few months.
  2. To have permanent residence somewhere.
    I live at 2a Acacia Avenue.
  3. To survive, to persevere, to continue.
    Her memory lives in that song.
  4. To spend, as one's life; to pass; to maintain; to continue in, constantly or habitually.
    to live an idle or a useful life.
  5. To act habitually in conformity with; to practice.


  1. Having life; that is alive. Used attributively.
    The post office will not ship live animals.
  2. Seen or heard from a broadcast, as it happens.
    The station presented a live news program every evening.
  3. Of a performance or speech, in person.
    This night club has a live band on weekends.
  4. Of a recorded performance, made in front of an audience, or not having been edited after recording.
  5. Of firearms or explosives, capable of causing harm.
    The air force practices dropping live bombs on the uninhabited island.
  6. Electrically charged or energized, usually indicating that the item may cause electrocution if touched.
    Use caution when working near live wires.
  7. Being a bet which can be raised by the bettor, usually in reference to a blind or straddle.
    Tommy's blind was live, so he was given the option to raise.

Usage notes
  • Live in the sense of "having life" is used only attributively (before a noun), as in "live animals". Predicatively (after the noun), alive is used, as in "be alive". Living may be used either attributively or predicatively.


  1. Of an event, as it happens; in real time; direct.
    The concert was broadcast live by radio.
  2. Of making a performance or speech, in person.
    He'll be appearing live at the auditorium.