attain


at·tain

verb \ə-ˈtān\

: to accomplish or achieve (something) : to succeed in getting or doing (something)

: to grow or increase to (a particular amount, size, etc.)

Full Definition of ATTAIN

transitive verb
1
:  to reach as an end :  gain, achieve <attain a goal>
2
:  to come into possession of :  obtain <he attained preferment over his fellows>
3
:  to come to as the end of a progression or course of movement <they attained the top of the hill> <attain a ripe old age>
intransitive verb
:  to come or arrive by motion, growth, or effort —usually used with to
at·tain·abil·i·ty \-ˌtā-nə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun
at·tain·able \-ˈtā-nə-bəl\ adjective

Examples of ATTAIN

  1. a quest to attain enlightenment
  2. She refused to let the injury keep her from attaining her goal of being in the Olympics.
  3. This kind of tree can attain a height of 20 feet within just a few years.
  4. The car can attain a top speed of 200 mph.

Origin of ATTAIN

Middle English atteynen, from Anglo-French ateign-, stem of ateindre to reach, accomplish, convict, from Vulgar Latin *attangere, alteration of Latin attingere, from ad- + tangere to touch — more at tangent
First Known Use: 14th century

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: attainableness
Previous Word in the Dictionary: attagirl (noun)
All Words Near: attain

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up attain? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).