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90s Slang You Should Know


[ig-zurt] /ɪgˈzɜrt/
verb (used with object)
to put forth or into use, as power; exercise, as ability or influence; put into vigorous action:
to exert every effort.
to put (oneself) into strenuous, vigorous action or effort.
Origin of exert
1650-60; < Latin ex(s)ertus, past participle of exserere to thrust out, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + ser(ere) to bind together + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
exertive, adjective
nonexertive, adjective
superexert, verb (used with object)
unexerted, adjective
well-exerted, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for exerted
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Wold exhibited his fine person and exerted all his captivating powers of intellect.

    Wild Western Scenes John Beauchamp Jones
  • She exerted a mild authority which was too potent for argument.

    Fairy Fingers Anna Cora Mowatt Ritchie
  • But such discipline as is now exerted over out-of-college students was undreamed of.

    An American at Oxford John Corbin
  • “If so, command me, madam,” Euphrosyne exerted herself to say.

    The Hour and the Man Harriet Martineau
  • If she exerted any influence, or wielded any power, it was not of the kind which attends a violent or morose temper.

    Bressant Julian Hawthorne
  • It has exerted a profound, enduring, moulding influence on my whole life.

    The Story of My Life Egerton Ryerson
British Dictionary definitions for exerted


verb (transitive)
to use (influence, authority, etc) forcefully or effectively
to apply (oneself) diligently; make a strenuous effort
Derived Forms
exertion, noun
exertive, adjective
Word Origin
C17 (in the sense: push forth, emit): from Latin exserere to thrust out, from ex-1 + serere to bind together, entwine
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for exerted



1660s, "thrust forth, push out," from Latin exertus/exsertus, past participle of exerere/exserere "thrust out, put forth," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + serere "attach, join" (see series). Meaning "put into use" is 1680s. Related: Exerted; exerting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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