Definition of attain
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
: to come or arrive by motion, growth, or effort —usually used with to will probably attain to a height of six feet
attainabilityplay \-ˌtā-nə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun
attainableplay \-ˈtā-nə-bəl\ adjective
Examples of attain in a Sentence
a quest to attain enlightenment
She refused to let the injury keep her from attaining her goal of being in the Olympics.
This kind of tree can attain a height of 20 feet within just a few years.
The car can attain a top speed of 200 mph.
Recent Examples of attain from the Web
The closure may help biologists attain their escapement goal of 13,000-28,000 Deshka kings reaching their upriver spawning beds.
In the end, the depth of feeling attained by the exceptionally sensitive Lee lingers, inspiring more spins through his songlike prose.
The standard-gauge railway line is Kenya’s biggest public investment since attaining independence in 1963 and was financed by loans from China Export-Import Bank.
Opposition citizenship spokesman Tony Burke tells reporters at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia Tuesday, June 20, 2017, that his Labor Party opposes government legislation that would raise the standards for attaining Australian citizenship.
Ann Mullollen and Todd Wright reached the 20-year mark, Pam Wright and Deborah Holihan attained 25 years, and Catherine McNees celebrated 30 years.
N.O. DNA Degas has attained artistic immortality, and his time in New Orleans has given him a special regard among the city's residents.
Halestorm may be just a couple more hits away from attaining the elite status of an arena headliner, but its sound is rooted in the hard rock of the ’70s and ’80s acts that also appeared Saturday.
Meditation, however, doesn't mean sitting absolutely still for 14 hours and attaining enlightenment.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'attain'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of attain
ATTAIN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of attain for English Language Learners
: to accomplish or achieve (something) : to succeed in getting or doing (something)
: to grow or increase to (a particular amount, size, etc.)
ATTAIN Defined for Kids
Definition of attain for Students
1 : to accomplish or achieve attain a goal
2 : to come into possession of : obtain attain knowledge
3 : to reach or come to gradually : arrive at … surely no bug in all the Land of Oz had ever before attained so enormous a size. — L. Frank Baum, The Marvelous Land of Oz
attainable\ə-ˈtā-nə-bəl\ adjective Are your goals attainable?
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up attain? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).