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See more synonyms for industrious on Thesaurus.com
  1. working energetically and devotedly; hard-working; diligent: an industrious person.
  2. Obsolete. skillful.
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Origin of industrious

1525–35; < Middle French industrie “cleverness, skill,” from Old French industrie “contrivance, device,” from Latin industrius “diligent, assiduous”; equivalent to indo-, by-form of in-in-2 + -struus, noun derivative of struere “to arrange, devise, build”
Related formsin·dus·tri·ous·ly, adverbin·dus·tri·ous·ness, nounnon·in·dus·tri·ous, adjectivenon·in·dus·tri·ous·ly, adverbnon·in·dus·tri·ous·ness, nounsu·per·in·dus·tri·ous, adjectivesu·per·in·dus·tri·ous·ly, adverbsu·per·in·dus·tri·ous·ness, nounun·in·dus·tri·ous, adjectiveun·in·dus·tri·ous·ly, adverb
Can be confusedindustrial industrious


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Synonym study

1. See busy.


Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

busily, energetically, laboriously, steadily, vigorously, actively, assiduously, sedulously

Examples from the Web for industriously

Historical Examples

  • He spent the morning with other men as industriously disposed as himself.

    The Strand Magazine, Volume V, Issue 25, January 1893


  • So Calhoun industriously concentrated his fire on the man trying to get above him.

    Pariah Planet

    Murray Leinster

  • Then they fired at him industriously and the charges crackled all around him.

    The Pirates of Ersatz

    Murray Leinster

  • That lump had come back into her throat and she was industriously swallowing it.

    A Little Miss Nobody

    Amy Bell Marlowe

  • There is where Amy will be if she keeps on as industriously as she has begun.

    Reels and Spindles

    Evelyn Raymond

British Dictionary definitions for industriously


  1. hard-working, diligent, or assiduous
  2. an obsolete word for skilful
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Derived Formsindustriously, adverbindustriousness, noun
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 industriously



"characterized by energy, effort, and attention," 1520s (implied in industriously), from Middle French industrieux and directly from Late Latin industriosus, from Latin industria (see industry). Retains the etymological sense. Related: Industriousness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper