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endeavor

[en-dev-er]
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verb (used without object)
  1. to exert oneself to do or effect something; make an effort; strive: We must constantly endeavor if we are to succeed.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to attempt; try: He endeavors to keep things neat in his apartment.
  2. Archaic. to attempt to achieve or gain.
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noun
  1. a strenuous effort; attempt.
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Also especially British, en·deav·our.

Origin of endeavor

1350–1400; Middle English endeveren, from the phrase putten in devoir to make an effort, assume responsibility; compare Anglo-French se mettre en deveir. See en-1, devoir
Related formsen·deav·or·er; especially British, en·deav·our·er, nounpre·en·deav·or, noun

Synonyms

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1, 2. See try. 4. See effort.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for endeavour

endeavour

US endeavor

verb
  1. to try (to do something)
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noun
  1. an effort to do or attain something
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Derived Formsendeavourer or US endeavorer, noun

Word Origin

C14: endeveren, from en- 1 + -deveren from dever duty, from Old French deveir; see devoirs
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 endeavour

chiefly British English spelling of endeavor (q.v.); for spelling, see -or. Related: Endeavoured; endeavoring; endeavours.

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endeavor

v.

c.1400; see endeavor (n.). Related: Endeavored; endeavoring.

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endeavor

n.

early 15c., "pains taken to attain an object," literally "in duty," from phrase put (oneself) in dever "make it one's duty" (a partial translation of Old French mettre en deveir "put in duty"), from Old French dever "duty," from Latin debere "to owe" (see debt). One's endeavors meaning one's "utmost effort" is from late 15c.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper