To feel pain or distress; sustain loss, injury, harm, or punishment. To tolerate or endure evil, injury, pain, or death. See Synonyms at bear1. To appear at a disadvantage: "He suffers by comparison with his greater contemporary\u201d ( Albert C. Baugh). To undergo or sustain (something painful, injurious, or unpleasant): "Ordinary men have always had to suffer the history their leaders were making\u201d ( Herbert J. Muller). To experience; undergo: suffer a change in staff. To endure or bear; stand: would not suffer fools. To permit; allow: "They were not suffered to aspire to so exalted a position as that of streetcar conductor\u201d ( Edmund S. Morgan).