With purposeful or sincere intent, as in We settled down to study in earnest. [c. a.d. 1000]
Also, in dead earnest. Serious, determined, as in We thought he was joking, but he was in earnest, or I'm in dead earnest about selling the business. In the variant, from the late 1800s, dead means “completely” or “thoroughly” and is used purely for emphasis. [c. a.d. 1000]
Words nearby in earnest
How to use in earnest in a sentence
This is a guy who has his son-in-law clean his eyeglasses, for crying out loud.
Her travel clique has been known to arrive at an airport, bags packed, passport-in-hand, within hours of spotting a deal.‘We Out Here’: Inside the New Black Travel Movement|Charlise Ferguson|January 4, 2015|DAILY BEAST
Earl Spencer adds, “Effectively, my great-grandfather sold his children to his father-in-law.”The Real-Life ‘Downton’ Millionairesses Who Changed Britain|Tim Teeman|December 31, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The lack of a gun is not likely to be a major problem for close-in air-to-air dogfights against other jets.
But those weapons are of limited utility, especially during close-in fights.
The hum of earnest or glad voices here contrasted strongly with silence and meditation there.Glances at Europe|Horace Greeley
Such throats are trying, are they not?In case one catches cold; Ah, yes!
The commander-in-chief still kept him attached to the headquarter staff, and constantly employed him on special service.
So far Murat had always held subordinate commands; his great ambition was to become the commander-in-chief of an independent army.
Their jurisdictions overlapped and the Gascon would play second fiddle to no one save to his great brother-in-law.