Thoroughly Enjoyed as a Meal: NYT Crossword Clue

If you are a crossword enthusiast, you might have come across the clue “thoroughly enjoyed as a meal” in the New York Times crossword puzzle. This clue has appeared in several editions of the NYT crossword, and it always has the same four-letter answer: ATE UP.

But why is ATE UP the correct answer for this clue? What does it mean to thoroughly enjoy a meal? And how can you use this expression in your own writing and speaking? In this article, we will explore the meaning, origin, and usage of the phrase ATE UP.

What Does ATE UP Mean?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, ATE UP is a phrasal verb that means “to consume or enjoy eagerly or avidly”. It can also mean “to use up or destroy completely”. The phrase is often used figuratively to describe a strong or excessive interest, enthusiasm, or admiration for something or someone.

For example, you can say that you ATE UP a book if you read it quickly and with great interest. You can also say that you ATE UP a movie if you enjoyed it very much and were captivated by it. Similarly, you can say that you ATE UP a meal if you ate it with gusto and relish.

Some synonyms for ATE UP are: devoured, relished, savored, gobbled up, wolfed down, consumed, and enjoyed.

What is the Origin of ATE UP?

The phrase ATE UP has been in use since the late 19th century. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the earliest recorded use of the phrase in the sense of “to consume eagerly or avidly” is from an 1897 novel by Rudyard Kipling called Captains Courageous. In the novel, a character says: “I’ve been at sea ever since I was nine, an’ I ate it up.”

The phrase ATE UP may have originated from the literal meaning of eating something up, which is to consume or finish all of something. The figurative meaning of enjoying something greatly may have derived from the idea of eating something with appetite and pleasure.

How to Use ATE UP in a Sentence?

Here are some examples of how to use ATE UP in a sentence:

  • She ATE UP every word of his speech. She was so impressed by his eloquence and charisma.
  • He ATE UP the scenery in his latest role. He was so expressive and dramatic that he stole the show.
  • They ATE UP the cake in no time. It was so delicious and moist that they couldn’t get enough of it.
  • I ATE UP the news about the latest scientific breakthrough. I was so fascinated by the discovery and its implications.
  • She was ATE UP with jealousy. She couldn’t stand seeing him with another woman.

Conclusion

ATE UP is a common phrase that means “to consume or enjoy eagerly or avidly”. It is often used as a crossword clue in the New York Times crossword puzzle, and it has a four-letter answer: ATE UP. The phrase can be used to describe a strong or excessive interest, enthusiasm, or admiration for something or someone. It can also be used to describe a literal or figurative consumption or destruction of something. ATE UP is a versatile and expressive phrase that can enrich your vocabulary and writing.