as·​pire | \ ə-ˈspī(-ə)r How to pronounce aspire (audio) \
aspired; aspiring

Definition of aspire

intransitive verb

1 : to seek to attain or accomplish a particular goal She aspired to a career in medicine.

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Other Words from aspire

aspirer noun

Synonyms for aspire


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Examples of aspire in a Sentence

aspire to great deeds, and you have a better chance of doing good deeds a tower aspiring towards the heavens
Recent Examples on the Web The film stars Bollywood star Ranveer Singh as an aspiring rapper, while Alia Bhatt adds more star power as his love interest. Tara Bitran, The Hollywood Reporter, "Oscars: A Guide to All 92 Foreign-Language Submissions," 7 Nov. 2019 And the prospect that Ukraine’s very future could be in the balance, as a country aspiring to join the West while feeling threatened by an aggressive Russia to the east. Lynn Berry, The Denver Post, "How “do us a favor” led to Trump impeachment inquiry," 4 Nov. 2019 Actors and jazz musicians recognized the talent of black artists and aspired to match their aptitude. Brianna Holt, Quartzy, "Teens on TikTok have no clue they’re perpetuating racist stereotypes," 1 Nov. 2019 Families aspiring to send their children to college begin to work within its unreachable promises, archaic ideas, and arduous demands very early on in their lives together and expect the strain to last long after children leave their homes. Caitlin Zaloom, Time, "How the Student Debt Complex Is Crushing the Next Generation of Americans," 29 Oct. 2019 After six-plus seasons in the minor leagues, sent back to Triple A for a third year, Bill Masse was becoming the last thing a professional ballplayer aspires to be. Dom Amore,, "Dom Amore: Manchester’s Bill Masse takes his baseball life’s lessons to Miami to work for old teammate Derek Jeter," 28 Oct. 2019 When Fields does take that abuse — which may be inevitable considering the caliber of opponent Ohio State aspires to face later this season — Saturday gave his teammates further confidence in his resiliency. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Justin Fields’ toughest, grittiest performance led Ohio State past Wisconsin," 26 Oct. 2019 But for aspiring professional cornerbacks, a fast 40-yard time is critical, as important to entering the NFL as a dazzling LSAT score is to entering Yale Law School. Oliver Staley, Quartz at Work, "How the NFL separates good from great when evaluating talent," 24 Oct. 2019 Not long ago, a Silicon Valley startup would, indeed, have been seen as a worthy model for someone aspiring to be president. Wired, "Why Zuckerberg’s Embrace of Mayor Pete Should Worry You," 23 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aspire.' 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 aspire

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for aspire

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French aspirer, from Latin aspirare, literally, to breathe upon, from ad- + spirare to breathe

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Statistics for aspire

Last Updated

14 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for aspire

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

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More Definitions for aspire


How to pronounce aspire (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of aspire

: to want to have or achieve something (such as a particular career or level of success)


as·​pire | \ ə-ˈspīr How to pronounce aspire (audio) \
aspired; aspiring

Kids Definition of aspire

: to very much want to have or achieve something aspire to greatness

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More from Merriam-Webster on aspire

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for aspire

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with aspire

Spanish Central: Translation of aspire

Nglish: Translation of aspire for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of aspire for Arabic Speakers

Comments on aspire

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


meddlesome, informal, or unofficial

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