German word of the day: Verzehren

German word of the day: Verzehren
Photo: depositphotos
Verzehren is a great word to use if you want to impress your German friends or teachers with this multipurpose verb.

It’s a synonym of essen and trinken, but is used in a slightly higher register, often in written texts. It also implies the idea of finishing whatever is being consumed.

It’s a bit like ‘consume’ or ‘devour’ in English, in that it is used in a more formal context, and suggests that whatever is being verzehrt is being finished.

Verzehren can also be used to talk about people. When used in this context, it suggests the idea of desiring someone so much that it exhausts you.


Jedes Jahr verzehrt ein Deutscher mehr als 1,800 Liter Wasser.

Every year a German consumes more than 1,800 litres of water.

Sie hat ihr Abendessen verzehrt, weil es so lecker war.

She devoured her dinner because it was so delicious.

Ich verzehre mich nach dem schönen Mädchen. 

I really desire that beautiful girl.

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