finely sharpened, as an edge; so shaped as to cut or pierce substances readily: a keen razor.
sharp, piercing, or biting: a keen wind;keen satire.
characterized by strength and distinctness of perception; extremely sensitive or responsive: keen eyes;keen ears.
having or showing great mental penetration or acumen: keen reasoning;a keen mind.
animated by or showing strong feeling or desire: keen competition.
intense, as feeling or desire: keen ambition;keen jealousy.
- keen·ly, adverb
- keen·ness, noun
Other definitions for keen (2 of 2)
a wailing lament for the dead.
to wail in lamentation for the dead.
to mourn for by or with such keening or wailing: keening his mother while kneeling at her grave.
- keener, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use keen in a sentence
That’s not good for a leader like Xi, keen to rule for life.
Sorkin is keen to stress that passion and persistence matter more than talent and the value of visualizing dreams before they become reality.How CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin Would Close the Wealth Gap | Eromo Egbejule | August 26, 2020 | Ozy
While countries are keen to build up scant domestic manufacturing capacity, it’s a costly and complex business, and difficult to compete with larger producers, Gavi’s Berkley said.These countries aren’t waiting for a U.S., China, or U.K. COVID vaccine | Claire Zillman, reporter | August 26, 2020 | Fortune
Like young adults who are keen to leave home at age 18, young leopards migrate in order to begin their family and establish territorial control over new areas.
For the last few months, Facebook, keen to look like it’s working with credible publishing sources, has paid Upday journalists to populate its Coronavirus Information Center.Investments in journalism, algorithms has Axel Springer’s five-year-old aggregator app Upday up over 30% in ad revenue | Lucinda Southern | July 30, 2020 | Digiday
Would a state with a keen understanding of the power of propaganda be so willing to just throw away such a trove of information?
Manttan is keen to carry out research on that Burmese side of the railway as his father worked on that section.
It offers keen insights into Hitch's craft while painting an intimate and unsentimental picture of the man behind the camera.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days | David Freeman | December 13, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
And because millions of us are so keen to do just that, our behavioral habits are changing.
The Telegraph reports that he is fluent in Swahili and a keen zoologist.How A British Aristocrat Used Big Game Hunter’s Sperm To Get Pregnant Without His Permission | Tom Sykes | December 2, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
The student who does not intend to arouse himself need hope for no keen sense of beauty.Expressive Voice Culture | Jessie Eldridge Southwick
One other illustration of this keen childish dialectic when face to face with the accuser deserves to be touched on.Children's Ways | James Sully
Impersonation may be more easily achieved intellectually, requiring only keen observation and the power of imitation.Expressive Voice Culture | Jessie Eldridge Southwick
The keen resentment had faded from his face, but an immense reproach was there—a heavy, helpless, appealing reproach.Confidence | Henry James
Garnache bowed to the lady, who returned his greeting by an inclination of the head, and his keen eyes played briskly over her.St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini
British Dictionary definitions for keen (1 of 2)
eager or enthusiastic
(postpositive foll by on) fond (of); devoted (to): keen on a girl; keen on golf
intellectually acute: a keen wit
(of sight, smell, hearing, etc) capable of recognizing fine distinctions
having a sharp cutting edge or point
extremely cold and penetrating: a keen wind
intense or strong: a keen desire
mainly British extremely low so as to be competitive: keen prices
slang, mainly US and Canadian very good
- keenly, adverb
- keenness, noun
British Dictionary definitions for keen (2 of 2)
to lament the dead
a dirge or lament for the dead
- keener, 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