- to occupy the attention or efforts of (a person or persons): He engaged her in conversation.
- to secure for aid, employment, use, etc.; hire: to engage a worker; to engage a room.
- to attract and hold fast: The novel engaged her attention and interest.
- to attract or please: His good nature engages everyone.
- to bind, as by pledge, promise, contract, or oath; make liable: He engaged himself to repay his debt within a month.
- to betroth (usually used in the passive): They were engaged last week.
- to bring (troops) into conflict; enter into conflict with: Our army engaged the enemy.
- Mechanics. to cause (gears or the like) to become interlocked; interlock with.
- to attach or secure.
- Obsolete. to entangle or involve.
- to occupy oneself; become involved: to engage in business or politics.
- to take employment: She engaged in her mother's business.
- to pledge one's word; assume an obligation: I was unwilling to engage on such terms.
- to cross weapons; enter into conflict: The armies engaged early in the morning.
- Mechanics. (of gears or the like) to interlock.
Origin of engage
SynonymsSee more synonyms for engage on Thesaurus.com
- choosing to involve oneself in or commit oneself to something: Some of the political activists grew less engagé as the years passed.
Origin of engagé
Examples from the Web for engage
Then we all have to do our part to engage the officers and our community, and hold everyone accountable in the process.How to Solve the Policing Crisis
January 5, 2015
The Millennial Action Project (MAP) seeks to engage young people in politics and give them more of a voice in governing.When Will We See a #Millennial Congress?
December 26, 2014
Not that he ever planned to engage in the controversy directly.Rob Marshall Defends ‘Into the Woods’
December 9, 2014
Cook walked more slowly than most, stopping to engage with passersby who expressed their own frustration and support.‘They Let Him Off?’ Scenes from NYC in Disbelief
December 4, 2014
Such messages are unlikely to be beloved of secularists who prefer to scoff at the religious rather than engage with them.Extreme Weather? Blame the End Times
November 28, 2014
I offered to engage not to marry at all, if that condition may be accepted.
Your aunt has been forced to engage not to interfere but by your father's direction.
He solicits me, 'To engage my honour to him never to have Mr. Solmes.'
Will you engage, my dear, that the hated man shall not come near your house?
I beg you will encourage the militia and engage them to continue their exertions.A Sketch of the Life of Brig. Gen. Francis Marion
William Dobein James
- to secure the services of; employ
- to secure for use; reserveengage a room
- to involve (a person or his attention) intensely; engross; occupy
- to attract (the affection) of (a person)her innocence engaged him
- to draw (somebody) into conversation
- (intr) to take part; participatehe engages in many sports
- to promise (to do something)
- (also intr) military to begin an action with (an enemy)
- to bring (a mechanism) into operationhe engaged the clutch
- (also intr) to undergo or cause to undergo interlocking, as of the components of a driving mechanism, such as a gear train
- machinery to locate (a locking device) in its operative position or to advance (a tool) into a workpiece to commence cutting
- (of a writer or artist, esp a man) morally or politically committed to some ideology
Word Origin and History for engage
early 15c., "to pledge," from Middle French engagier, from Old French en gage "under pledge," from en "make" + gage "pledge," through Frankish from Proto-Germanic *wadiare "pledge" (see wed).
It shows the common evolution of Germanic -w- to French -g-; cf. Guillaume from Wilhelm). Meaning "attract the attention of" is from 1640s; that of "employ" is from 1640s, from notion of "binding as by a pledge." Specific sense of "promise to marry" is 1610s (implied in engaged).