aim

verb
\ ˈām \
aimed; aiming; aims

Definition of aim

 (Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to direct a course specifically : to point a weapon at an object Aim carefully before shooting.
2 : aspire, intend She aims to win.

transitive verb

1a : point aim a gun
b : to direct toward a specified object or goal a story aimed at children
2 obsolete : guess, conjecture

aim

noun

Definition of aim (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : the pointing of a weapon at a mark She took careful aim.
b : the ability to hit a target a shooter with good aim
c : a weapon's accuracy or effectiveness The gun's aim is off.
2 : a clearly directed intent or purpose Our aim is to win.

3 obsolete

b : the directing of effort toward a goal
4 obsolete : mark, target

Definition of AIM (Entry 3 of 3)

American Indian Movement

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Other Words from aim

Noun

aimless \ ām-​ləs \ adjective
aimless wandering an aimless youth
aimlessly adverb
aimlessness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for aim

Noun

intention, intent, purpose, design, aim, end, object, objective, goal mean what one intends to accomplish or attain. intention implies little more than what one has in mind to do or bring about. announced his intention to marry intent suggests clearer formulation or greater deliberateness. the clear intent of the statute purpose suggests a more settled determination. being successful was her purpose in life design implies a more carefully calculated plan. the order of events came by accident, not design aim adds to these implications of effort directed toward attaining or accomplishing. her aim was to raise film to an art form end stresses the intended effect of action often in distinction or contrast to the action or means as such. willing to use any means to achieve his end object may equal end but more often applies to a more individually determined wish or need. his constant object was the achievement of pleasure objective implies something tangible and immediately attainable. their objective is to seize the oil fields goal suggests something attained only by prolonged effort and hardship. worked years to reach her goals

Examples of aim in a Sentence

Verb

He aimed the gun carefully before shooting. Don't aim that pistol at me! He aimed carefully before shooting. Try to aim the antenna in the right direction. She aimed the telescope at a point in the eastern sky. She aimed at a point in the eastern sky. He aimed the stone at the dog but missed. The throw from the shortstop was poorly aimed. well-aimed and badly aimed kicks He aimed his criticism primarily at parents.

Noun

a political movement whose aim is to promote world peace Our ultimate aim is to create something of lasting value. The book has two basic aims. She was unable to achieve her aims. I started this business with the aim of making a profit. He fired at the target but his aim was off and he missed.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Rosewood Hotel, Hong Kong 2019 sees the completion of Hong Kong’s Victoria Dockside, the Adrian Cheng-helmed project which aims to turn the city’s Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront into a food, art, and design hub. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "The Most Anticipated Hotel Openings of 2019," 29 Dec. 2018 Another group of organizers, including Vanessa Wruble, split off and formed another group, called March On, which aimed to focus on winning elections in red states. Anna North, Vox, "The Women’s March changed the American left. Now anti-Semitism allegations threaten the group’s future.," 21 Dec. 2018 The agency was particularly excited about Virgin's help with its Collisions Into Dust Experiment (COLLIDE), which aims to map the behavior of dust particles on planetary surfaces. Sam Blum, Popular Mechanics, "Virgin Galactic Completes Successful Flight in Big Boost for Space Tourism," 13 Dec. 2018 The lawsuit, which aims to stop the issuance of permits for the use of seismic air guns, will be filed by a coalition of environmental groups in federal court in South Carolina on Tuesday, according to the individuals. Meg Kinnard, The Seattle Times, "Environmental groups to sue over offshore drilling tests," 10 Dec. 2018 This shot was taken to test the Smart HDR feature, which aims to achieve more detail in shadows and highlights—and to avoid washing out of the image by super bright highlights. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "iPhone XS and XS Max review: Big screens, big performance, big lenses, big prices," 1 Oct. 2018 The trial, which aimed to investigate how food deprivation affects the aging process, involved 218 normal and slightly overweight men and women between the ages of 21 and 51. Mark Barna, Discover Magazine, "Not So Fast," 24 Sep. 2018 Disney Over the past couple of decades, one idea has almost become a cliché in reviews of animated movies: They might be aimed at kids, but there’s plenty about them that will appeal to adults! Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Why do so many animated films have great stories? One secret: storyboarding.," 20 Nov. 2018 The program is aimed at children brought to the country illegally by their parents. Paulina Dedaj, Fox News, "Man arrested in Virginia, accused of multiple murders, is DACA recipient, source says," 28 Sep. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As the summer of 2017 wore on, the attackers took aim at companies that help utilities manage their computer control systems. Rebecca Smith And Rob Barry, WSJ, "America’s Electric Grid Has a Vulnerable Back Door—and Russia Walked Through It," 10 Jan. 2019 In addition to targeting Clinton, Whitaker took aim at Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., while filing election law complaints against Democrats and some Republicans. Shawn Boburg, The Seattle Times, "Conservative nonprofit with obscure roots, undisclosed funders paid Whitaker $1.2 million," 20 Nov. 2018 On Saturday night, SNL took aim at the controversial decision. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "'Saturday Night Live's' Locker Room Sketch About Brett Kavanaugh's Confirmation Is Too Real," 7 Oct. 2018 The other category of self-care studies takes aim at medical pros themselves. Amy Keller Laird, SELF, "Why Your Self-Care Methods Aren't Working—and How to Fix That," 20 July 2018 Despite positive statements from both sides, the upcoming transition of power in Mexico has the potential to further destabilize U.S.-Mexico relations if either leader takes aim at the other to appeal to his political base at home. Susannah George, chicagotribune.com, "Mexico officials urge Mike Pompeo to reunite immigrant families quickly," 13 July 2018 Paxton’s suit takes aim at that provision and others. Austin Horn, San Antonio Express-News, "With ACA under attack, a family racked by illness wonders what will happen to their health coverage," 13 July 2018 Despite positive statements from both sides, the upcoming transition of power in Mexico also has the potential to destabilize U.S.-Mexico relations if either leader takes aim at the other to appeal to his political base at home. Washington Post, "Pompeo travels to Mexico to meet new leftist president-elect," 13 July 2018 One day into a weeklong European tour that will be rooted in meetings with NATO and British leaders, followed by a finale in Finland with Russian President Vladimir Putin, President Trump took aim at German Chancellor Angela Merkel via Twitter. Fiona Ma | Wwd, latimes.com, "Melania Trump wears Calvin Klein for concert outing during NATO summit, Elie Saab for evening festivities," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aim.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of aim

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for aim

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French aesmer & esmer; Anglo-French aesmer, from a- (from Latin ad-) + esmer to estimate, from Latin aestimare

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Learn More about aim

Dictionary Entries near aim

Ailuropoda

Ailuropus

Ailurus

aim

AIM

aimable

aimak

Statistics for aim

Last Updated

15 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for aim

The first known use of aim was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for aim

aim

verb

English Language Learners Definition of aim

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to point (a weapon) at a target

: to point (a device) at something

: to direct (something, such as a missile, a ball, a punch, or a kick) at a target

aim

noun

English Language Learners Definition of aim (Entry 2 of 2)

: a goal or purpose

: the ability to hit a target

aim

verb
\ ˈām \
aimed; aiming

Kids Definition of aim

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to point a weapon toward an object
2 : intend We aim to please.
3 : to direct toward an object or goal He aimed the stone at the tree. The exercise is aimed at improving balance.

aim

noun

Kids Definition of aim (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the ability to hit a target His aim was excellent.
2 : the pointing of a weapon at a target She took careful aim.
3 : a goal or purpose Our aim is to win.

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More from Merriam-Webster on aim

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with aim

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for aim

Spanish Central: Translation of aim

Nglish: Translation of aim for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of aim for Arabic Speakers

Comments on aim

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