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See also: Liver


Sheep's liver

Etymology 1[edit]

From Middle English, from Old English lifer, from Proto-Germanic *librō. Cognate with Dutch lever, German Leber, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish lever (the last three from Old Norse lifr).


  • IPA(key): /lɪvə(ɹ)/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪvə(ɹ)


liver (countable and uncountable, plural livers)

  1. (anatomy) A large organ in the body that stores and metabolizes nutrients, destroys toxins and produces bile. It is responsible for thousands of biochemical reactions.
    Steve Jobs is a famous liver transplant recipient.
  2. (countable, uncountable) This organ, as taken from animals used as food.
    I'd like some goose liver pate.
    You could fry up some chicken livers for a tasty treat. — Nah, I don't like chicken liver.
    • 1993, Philippa Gregory, Fallen Skies, →ISBN, page 222:
      "I should think you've rocked the boat enough already by refusing to eat liver."
  3. A dark brown colour, tinted with red and gray, like the colour of liver.
    liver colour:  
Usage notes[edit]
  • The noun is often used attributively to modify other words. Used in this way, it frequently means "concerning the liver", "intended for the liver" or "made of liver" .
Derived terms[edit]


liver (not comparable)

  1. Of the colour of liver (dark brown, tinted with red and gray).
    • 2006, Rawdon Briggs Lee, A History and Description of the Modern Dogs of Great Britain & Ireland, →ISBN, page 298:
      His friend Rothwell, who had the use of the best Laveracks for breeding purposes, wrote him that one of his puppies was liver and white.

See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

From live +‎ -er.



liver (plural livers)

  1. Someone who lives (usually in a specified way).
    • 1603, John Florio, transl.; Michel de Montaigne, chapter 31, in The Essayes, [], book II, printed at London: By Val[entine] Simmes for Edward Blount [], OCLC 946730821:
      Ephori of Sparta, hearing a dissolute liver propose a very beneficial advise unto the people, commaunded him to hold his peace, and desired an honest man to assume the invention of it unto himselfe and to propound it.
    • 1621, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy, Oxford: Printed by Iohn Lichfield and Iames Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC 216894069; The Anatomy of Melancholy: [], 2nd corrected and augmented edition, Oxford: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, 1624, OCLC 54573970, partition II, section 3, member 7:
      a wicked liver may be reclaimed, and prove an honest man [].
    • Prior
      Try if life be worth the liver's care.

Etymology 3[edit]

live (adjective) +‎ -(e)r.




  1. comparative form of live: more live
    Seeing things on a big screen somehow makes them seem liver.

Further reading[edit]




liver m

  1. painter

Norwegian Nynorsk[edit]



  1. (non-standard since 1917) present tense of liva