Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[self-stahr-ter] /ˈsɛlfˈstɑr tər/
starter (def 3).
Informal. a person who begins work or undertakes a project on his or her own initiative, without needing to be told or encouraged to do so.
Origin of self-starter
First recorded in 1890-95
Related forms
self-starting, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for self-starter
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Doc pushed the self-starter; there came a click, a low humming.

    The Dark Star Robert W. Chambers
  • Mr. Bill asked tenderly, as he put his finger on the self-starter.

    The Amazing Inheritance Frances R. Sterrett
  • "Six cylinder, self-starter," continued Sam with increasing enthusiasm.

    The Major Ralph Connor
  • "self-starter," echoed Joe, going off into a series of choking chuckles.

    The Major Ralph Connor
  • Mamise saw that most of the employees were employees because they lacked the self-starter of ambition.

    The Cup of Fury Rupert Hughes
  • It had a self-starter, which was, as they usually appear to be, out of commission.

    The Idyl of Twin Fires Walter Prichard Eaton
  • Having ridden in the roadster, Smith knew that it had no self-starter.

    The Real Man Francis Lynde
  • In haste they scrambled aboard, and pressed the self-starter on the engine.

    Air Service Boys Over The Rhine Charles Amory Beach
  • Then Gabriel pressed the button of the self-starter and opened the throttle.

    The Air Trust George Allan England
British Dictionary definitions for self-starter


the former name for a starter (sense 2)
a person who is strongly motivated and shows initiative, esp at work
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for self-starter

1894, of engines, 1960, of persons (especially workers), from self- + starter. Self-starting (adj.), of motors, is attested from 1866.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for self-starter

Word Value for self

Scrabble Words With Friends