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Effort definitions

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

EF'FORT, n. [L. fortis. See Force.] A straining; an exertion of strength; endeavor; strenuous exertion to accomplish an object; applicable to physical or intellectual power. The army, by great efforts, scaled the walls. Distinction in science is gained by continued efforts of the mind.

WordNet (r) 3.0 (2005)

1: earnest and conscientious activity intended to do or accomplish something; "made an effort to cover all the reading material"; "wished him luck in his endeavor"; "she gave it a good try" [syn: attempt, effort, endeavor, endeavour, try]
2: use of physical or mental energy; hard work; "he got an A for effort"; "they managed only with great exertion" [syn: effort, elbow grease, exertion, travail, sweat]
3: a notable achievement; "he performed a great feat"; "the book was her finest effort" [syn: feat, effort, exploit]
4: a series of actions advancing a principle or tending toward a particular end; "he supported populist campaigns"; "they worked in the cause of world peace"; "the team was ready for a drive toward the pennant"; "the movement to end slavery"; "contributed to the war effort" [syn: campaign, cause, crusade, drive, movement, effort]

Merriam Webster's

noun Etymology: Middle French, from Old French esforz, esfort, from esforcier to force, from ex- + forcier to force Date: 15th century 1. conscious exertion of power ; hard work <a job requiring time and effort> 2. a serious attempt ; try <making an effort to reduce costs> 3. something produced by exertion or trying <the novel was her most ambitious effort> 4. effective force as distinguished from the possible resistance called into action by such a force 5. the total work done to achieve a particular end <the war effort>

Oxford Reference Dictionary

n. 1 strenuous physical or mental exertion. 2 a vigorous or determined attempt. 3 Mech. a force exerted. 4 colloq. the result of an attempt; something accomplished (not bad for a first effort). Derivatives: effortful adj. Etymology: F f. OF esforcier ult. f. L fortis strong

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Effort Ef"fort, v. t. To stimulate. [Obs.] ``He efforted his spirits.'' --Fuller.

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Effort Ef"fort, n. [F. effort, OF. esfort, for esfors, esforz, fr. esforcier. See Efforce.] 1. An exertion of strength or power, whether physical or mental, in performing an act or aiming at an object; more or less strenuous endeavor; struggle directed to the accomplishment of an object; as, an effort to scale a wall. We prize the stronger effort of his power. --Pope. 2. (Mech.) A force acting on a body in the direction of its motion. --Rankine. Syn: Endeavor; exertion; struggle; strain; straining; attempt; trial; essay. See Attempt.

Collin's Cobuild Dictionary

(efforts) Frequency: The word is one of the 700 most common words in English. 1. If you make an effort to do something, you try very hard to do it. He made no effort to hide his disappointment... Finding a cure requires considerable time and effort. ...his efforts to reform Italian research... Despite the efforts of the United Nations, the problem of drug traffic continues to grow... But a concerted effort has begun to improve the quality of the urban air. N-VAR: oft N to-inf 2. If you say that someone did something with effort or with an effort, you mean it was difficult for them to do. (WRITTEN) She took a deep breath and sat up slowly and with great effort... With an effort she contained her irritation. = difficulty N-UNCOUNT: usu with N, also a N 3. An effort is a particular series of activities that is organized by a group of people in order to achieve something. ...a famine relief effort in Angola. N-COUNT: usu supp N 4. If you say that something is an effort, you mean that an unusual amount of physical or mental energy is needed to do it. Even carrying the camcorder while hiking in the forest was an effort. = strain, struggle N-SING: a N 5. If you make the effort to do something, you do it, even though you need extra energy to do it or you do not really want to. I don't get lonely now because I make the effort to see people. PHRASE: V inflects, oft PHR to-inf

Soule's Dictionary of English Synonyms

n. Endeavor, attempt, trial, essay, exertion, struggle, strain, straining, striving, stretch.

Moby Thesaurus

accomplished fact, accomplishment, achievement, act, acta, action, ad hoc measure, adventure, affair, answer, application, approach, artifice, assay, attainment, attempt, bid, blow, business, chore, commitment, contract, contrivance, countermove, coup, course of action, crack, creation, deal, dealings, deed, demarche, determination, device, dodge, doing, doings, elbow grease, endeavor, energy, engagement, enterprise, essay, exertion, expedient, experiment, exploit, fait accompli, feat, fling, force, gambit, gest, gimmick, go, hand, handiwork, hard pull, improvisation, job, jury-rig, jury-rigged expedient, labor, last expedient, last resort, last shift, lick, long pull, makeshift, maneuver, means, measure, might, might and main, move, muscle, nerve and sinew, obligation, offer, operation, overt act, pains, passage, performance, pis aller, plan, power, proceeding, production, program, project, proposition, puissance, res gestae, resolution, resort, resource, shake-up, shift, shot, solution, stab, step, stopgap, strain, stratagem, striving, stroke, stroke of policy, strong bid, struggle, stunt, tactic, task, temporary expedient, tentative, thing, thing done, toil, tour de force, transaction, travail, trial, trial and error, trick, trouble, trump, try, turn, undertaking, venture, whack, while, work, working hypothesis, working proposition, works


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