ambitious

adjective
am·​bi·​tious | \am-ˈbi-shəs \

Definition of ambitious 

1a : having or controlled by ambition : having a desire to be successful, powerful, or famous an ambitious young executive

b : having a desire to achieve a particular goal : aspiring ambitious for power

2 : resulting from, characterized by, or showing ambition an ambitious film

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from ambitious

ambitiously adverb
ambitiousness noun

Examples of ambitious in a Sentence

The company was created by two very ambitious young men in the early 1900s. This 500-page book is her most ambitious effort yet. Your plans for the future are very ambitious. It was too ambitious a task for just one person.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

But experimentation, failure, politics, and infighting seem to be inescapable elements of any ambitious human endeavor. Nathanael Johnson, WIRED, "Where Can Climate Activists Find Common Ground?," 9 July 2018 Bowser’s plan to replace the shelter with six smaller facilities spread throughout the city has been the most ambitious initiative of her term. Peter Jamison, Washington Post, "Weakened D.C. General shelter bill draws ire from advocates for homeless," 10 July 2018 One of Fort Worth's newest and most ambitious residential developments is growing at a brisk pace. Gordon Dickson, star-telegram, "This former ranch could have 50,000 Fort Worth residents. 'In 10 years, this will be a city in itself'," 9 July 2018 The most ambitious effort of that kind was the destruction and evacuation, after 1991, of parts of the former Soviet nuclear arsenal in Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan. The Economist, "North Korea presents nuclear disarmament’s biggest challenge yet," 5 July 2018 In a place with a depressed economy, for example, the most ambitious people move to places with more opportunity, leaving an even bleaker situation behind. Neil Irwin, New York Times, "One County Thrives. The Next One Over Struggles. Economists Take Note.," 29 June 2018 Latest Stories The vote represents the most ambitious congressional effort yet to combat the current epidemic. NBC News, "House passes massive package to address opioids crisis," 22 June 2018 The House on Friday passed the most ambitious congressional push yet to address the growing opioid epidemic, with provisions directing federal agencies to prioritize training, support recovery centers and expand research on several fronts. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "We the seagulls," 22 June 2018 At the same time, the Democratic Party's most ambitious were eager to play a leading role in the high-profile immigration debate as a possible precursor to the crowded 2020 Democratic presidential primary. Steve Peoples, The Christian Science Monitor, "Democrats scramble to find clear strategy against Trump's immigration policy," 21 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of ambitious

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

History and Etymology for ambitious

see ambition entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about ambitious

Dictionary Entries near ambitious

ambisyllabic

ambit

ambition

ambitious

ambitious for

ambitty

ambitus

Statistics for ambitious

Last Updated

3 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ambitious

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for ambitious

ambitious

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of ambitious

: having ambition : having a desire to be successful, powerful, or famous

: not easily done or achieved : requiring or showing ambition

ambitious

adjective
am·​bi·​tious | \am-ˈbi-shəs \

Kids Definition of ambitious

1 : possessing a desire for success, honor, or power

2 : not easily done or achieved She has an ambitious plan to become a doctor.

Other Words from ambitious

ambitiously adverb

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on ambitious

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to clear from alleged fault or guilt

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!