diligent

adjective
dil·​i·​gent | \ ˈdi-lə-jənt How to pronounce diligent (audio) \

Definition of diligent

: characterized by steady, earnest, and energetic effort : painstaking a diligent worker

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Other Words from diligent

diligently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for diligent

busy, industrious, diligent, assiduous, sedulous mean actively engaged or occupied. busy chiefly stresses activity as opposed to idleness or leisure. too busy to spend time with the children industrious implies characteristic or habitual devotion to work. industrious employees diligent suggests earnest application to some specific object or pursuit. very diligent in her pursuit of a degree assiduous stresses careful and unremitting application. assiduous practice sedulous implies painstaking and persevering application. a sedulous investigation of the murder

Did You Know?

You're more likely to be diligent about something if you love doing it. The etymology of diligent reflects the fact that affection can lead to energetic effort. The word, which entered English in the 14th century by way of Anglo-French, descends from the Latin verb diligere, meaning "to value or esteem highly" or "to love." Of course, you don’t need to care for the task at hand in order to be diligent, but it certainly does help!

Examples of diligent in a Sentence

The American intelligence community's single greatest failing is its lack of good "humint"—human intelligence, the dirty, diligent, shoe-leather penetration of terror networks. — Johanna McGeary, Time, 15 Oct. 2001 Like any diligent foreign correspondent, he attends the briefings and collects face time with the officials, but he knows it's the citizens (the upstanding as well as the jailers, the whores, the black marketeers and the smugglers) who tell the truth … Rolling Stone, 19 Sept. 1996 He was a fourth-year drama student at UCLA and diligent about such valuable actorly exercises as eavesdropping, spying, and telling complicated lies to fellow passengers on airplanes. — Michael Chabon, A Model World and Other Stories, 1991 In spite of diligent work as editor, hack writer, sea captain, and assorted other trades, he wound up poor. — Monroe K. Spears, American Ambitions, 1987 a student who has been unceasingly diligent in pursuit of a degree in mathematics
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Recent Examples on the Web Luba’s parents also played an early role in establishing a diligent work ethic in their kids. Deesha Thosar, courant.com, "Rachel Luba is rejecting the Old Boys’ Club and changing the baseball industry after starting her own agency," 13 Dec. 2020 Though she's been diligent about her skin, Destiny's been giving her hair a break as the country meanders through various levels of lockdown. Jihan Forbes, Allure, "Ryan Destiny Is the New Face of Black Opal, and Oh, What a Face," 26 Jan. 2021 Pappas is diligent about bringing in at least 15 or more fresh-to-market antiques each week, giving shoppers new and exciting options for weekly shopping. Melanie Savage, courant.com, "Shop Brooklyn Antiques, Arts and Refinements for one of a kind items," 21 Dec. 2020 In the meantime, the Warriors will be diligent about following league protocols to guard against a COVID-19 outbreak. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Taking stock of most pressing items on Warriors’ training-camp to-do list," 1 Dec. 2020 The polling location had a long line toward the street before the polls opened, but the poll workers have been diligent about working voters through. Cameron Fields, cleveland, "Election Day 2020: Voters lined up early at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, polling locations across the region," 3 Nov. 2020 In the early Saturday execution of Higgs, officials inside the execution chamber were more diligent about their keeping masks on after a federal judge expressed concern that officials at Johnson’s execution were lax about coronavirus precautions. Michael Tarm And Michael Kunzelman, Anchorage Daily News, "Trump administration carries out 13th and final execution," 16 Jan. 2021 Still, Baffert has promised to be more diligent and has hired outside help to oversee that protocols are followed. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, "Opinion: By handing drug enforcement to U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, can horse racing clean up its act?," 22 Dec. 2020 Unfortunately, outbreaks happen, even if everyone is diligent in following protocols. Star Tribune, "College football taking on the pandemic, in retrospect, is worthy of a few cheers," 11 Dec. 2020

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for diligent

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin diligent-, diligens, from present participle of diligere to esteem, love, from di- (from dis- apart) + legere to select — more at legend

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Time Traveler for diligent

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

27 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Diligent.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/diligent. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for diligent

diligent

adjective
dil·​i·​gent | \ ˈdi-lə-jənt How to pronounce diligent (audio) \

Kids Definition of diligent

: showing steady and earnest care and hard work a diligent search

Other Words from diligent

diligently adverb

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Comments on diligent

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