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verb \ə-ˈchēv\

Simple Definition of achieve

  • : to get or reach (something) by working hard

  • : to become successful : to reach a goal

Full Definition of achieve


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to carry out successfully :  accomplish <achieve a gradual increase in production>

  3. 2 :  to get or attain as the result of exertion :  reach <achieved a high degree of skill> <achieved greatness>

  4. intransitive verb
  5. :  to attain a desired end or aim :  become successful

achiev·ableplay \-ˈchē-və-bəl\ adjective
achiev·er noun

Examples of achieve

  1. a diet that achieves dramatic results

  2. With much practice, she has achieved a high level of skill.

  3. They achieved high scores on their math tests.

  4. We give students the skills they need in order to achieve in college.

Origin of achieve

Middle English acheven, from Anglo-French achever to finish, from a- (from Latin ad-) + chef end, head — more at chief

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of achieve

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill <performed gymnastics>. execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent <executed the hit-and-run>. discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks <discharged his duties>. accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out <accomplished everything they set out to do>. achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties <achieve greatness>. effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles <effected sweeping reforms>. fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities <fulfilled their ambitions>.

Seen and Heard

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February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

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