AskDefine | Define lust

Dictionary Definition



1 a strong sexual desire [syn: lecherousness, lustfulness]
2 self-indulgent sexual desire (personified as one of the deadly sins) [syn: luxuria] v : have a craving, appetite, or great desire for [syn: crave, hunger, thirst, starve]

User Contributed Dictionary



lust < *lust-; akin to Old Saxon, Dutch lust, Old Frisian, Old High German, German Lust, & Swedish lust, Danish lust & Icelandic lyst, Old Norse losti, Gothic lustus, and perhaps to Sanskrit lush "to desire", or to English loose. Confer list, listless.


  • /lʌst/, /lʊst/
    Rhymes with: -ʌst


  1. Strong desire, especially of a sexual nature.
    Upon seeing her, I was filled with lust


strong desire, especially of a sexual nature


  1. To very strongly desire.
  2. To want to have sexual intercourse with.


Strongly desire
Want to have intercourse with



  1. Third person singular present tense of lusten.

Old English


  1. desire, pleasure, appetite, lust
    Him wæs metes micel lust: he had a craving for food. (Ælfric's Homilies)

Extensive Definition

Lust is any intense desire or craving for self gratification and excitement. Lust can mean strictly sexual lust, although it is also common to speak of a "lust for men", "lust for blood (bloodlust for short)" or a "lust for power", or other goals and to "lust for love". The Greek word which translates as lust is epithymia (επιθυμια), which also is translated into English as "to covet".

Lust in the context of religion


Catholic tradition considers lust to be one of the main sins or vices. In the Old Testament, adultery was punishable by stoning. In the New Testament, Jesus included looking "lustfully at a woman" as adultery. (Matthew 5:28) The "woman" is a "Married" woman.


Protestants hold that all sins, including lust, can be forgiven only by God through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. If a person believes in Jesus as his only Savior, then that person, regardless of what he has done, will receive Jesus' righteousness and will be able to enter heaven. But to enter the heaven of God , One must receive the Spirit of God . The Holy Bible tells of this in Luke 7:36-50, where the Lord Jesus Christ forgives a sinful woman.

Punishment in the afterlife

According to some Christian sources, reprobates whose chief unforgiven sin is lust are punished in Hell by being "smothered in fire and brimstone." However, while most Christian traditions agree that at some point after death the damned individuals find themselves in a hell where they suffer punishment for their sins, most traditions also agree that one can only speculate regarding the precise nature of any punishment above and beyond the principal torment, which comes simply from being totally separated from God.
In Dante's Inferno, the first Canticle of the Divine Comedy, the lustful are punished by being continuously swept around in a whirlwind, which symbolizes their passions.

Repentance in Purgatory

According to The Divine Comedy, penitents who are guilty of lust cleanse their soul of the sin by walking through flames, thereby purging their minds of all lustful thoughts.


According to traditional Judaism, nothing on Earth was created without a purpose. This includes basic human drives. Lust is only sinful when it is after another man's possessions or wife. Lust is not only not sinful, but a mitzvah, when one lusts after their spouse.

Symbolic representations

A frequent visual symbol for the sin of lust is the color blue, as with the cover of the book Lust in The Seven Deadly Sins series published by the Oxford University Press.
Another symbol of lust is the animal cow (or bull). An example of this appears in the engraving [ Shamelessness] by the 16th century artist Georg Pencz.
Also, lust can be seen in the eponymous Eighth ATU in the Thoth Tarot card of Aleister Crowley.


lust in Danish: Begær
lust in German: Wollust
lust in Spanish: Lujuria
lust in French: Luxure
lust in Korean: 성욕
lust in Hebrew: תשוקה
lust in Italian: Lussuria
lust in Lithuanian: Godumas
lust in Dutch: Onkuisheid
lust in Japanese: 性欲
lust in Norwegian: Lyst
lust in Polish: Pożądanie
lust in Portuguese: Luxúria (pecado)
lust in Russian: Половое влечение
lust in Simple English: Lust
lust in Ukrainian: Хтивість
lust in Yiddish: גלוסט
lust in Chinese: 性欲

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

acedia, ache, ache for, acquisitiveness, ambition, andromania, anger, animality, animus, aphrodisia, appetence, appetency, appetite, appetition, avarice, avariciousness, avaritia, avidity, avidness, bawdiness, biological urge, bodily appetite, carnal desire, carnality, choice, clitoromania, command, conation, conatus, concupiscence, coveting, covetousness, crave, craving, cupidity, deadly sin, decision, desire, determination, dirtiness, discretion, disposition, drive, energy, envy, eromania, eroticism, eroticomania, eroticomaniac, erotism, erotomania, excitement, fancy, fervor, fleshliness, fleshly lust, free choice, free will, frenzy of desire, furor uterinus, fury of desire, gluttony, goatishness, grasping, graspingness, greed, greediness, gula, gynecomania, hanker, heat, hoggishness, horniness, hot blood, hot pants, hunger, hysteromania, inclination, incontinence, indecency, infantile sexuality, inordinate desire, insatiability, insatiable desire, intemperateness, intention, invidia, ira, itch, itching palm, lasciviousness, lecherousness, lechery, lewdness, libidinousness, libido, lickerishness, liking, lubriciousness, lubricity, lust after, lustfulness, luxuria, mind, nymphomania, objective, obscenity, overgreediness, passion, piggishness, pine, pleasure, polymorphous perversity, priapism, pride, prurience, pruriency, randiness, rapaciousness, rapacity, ravenousness, resolution, rut, salaciousness, salacity, satyriasis, satyrism, sensuality, sexiness, sexual desire, sexual longing, sexual passion, sexuality, sloth, sordidness, superbia, swinishness, thirst, urge, uteromania, velleity, venereal appetite, volition, voraciousness, voracity, will, will power, wish, wolfishness, wrath, yearn, yearning, yen
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