[ uh-tempt ]
/ əˈtɛmpt /

verb (used with object)

to make an effort at; try; undertake; seek: to attempt an impossible task; to attempt to walk six miles.
Archaic. to attack; move against in a hostile manner: to attempt a person's life.
Archaic. to tempt.


an effort made to accomplish something: He made an attempt to swim across the lake.
an attack or assault: an attempt upon the leader's life.

Nearby words

  1. attar,
  2. attar of roses,
  3. attawapiskat,
  4. attelet,
  5. attemper,
  6. attempted,
  7. attenborough,
  8. attend,
  9. attendance,
  10. attendance allowance

Origin of attempt

1350–1400; Middle English < Anglo-French atempter < Latin attemptāre to test, tamper with. See at-, tempt

1. See try. 4. try, endeavor.

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for attempted

British Dictionary definitions for attempted


/ (əˈtɛmpt) /

verb (tr)


Derived Formsattemptable, adjectiveattempter, noun

Word Origin for attempt

C14: from Old French attempter, from Latin attemptāre to strive after, from tentāre to try


Attempt should not be used in the passive when followed by an infinitive: attempts were made to find a solution (not a solution was attempted to be found)

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

Word Origin and History for attempted
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper