How to use and read English dictionaries?

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I have a somewhat strange question and I need your help. When I read English dictionaries, I think that definitions starting with to infinitive can be replaced with words.

 

For example,

 

eat

[transitive]  to use a very large amount of something:
This car eats petrol.

->This car uses a very large amount of petrol.

 

eat

[intransitive and transitive]  to have a meal

They're eating breakfast.

-> They're having breakfast.

 

However, this one is unnatural.

 

eat

 [intransitive and transitive]  to put food in your mouth and chew and swallow it

Does Rob eat fish?

-> Does Rob put fish in his mouth and chew and swallow it?

 

I would like to know if definitions starting with to infintives like to have a meal can be replaced with words but sometimes although definitions have the meaning of the words, replacing to infintives with words is not natual and not allowed?

 

What do you experts think?

 

Thank you so much in advance.

edited Feb 21 '14 at 11:36 Hans Contributor

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