driv·​en | \ ˈdri-vən How to pronounce driven (audio) \

Definition of driven

1a : having a compulsive or urgent quality a driven sense of obligation
b : determined to succeed : highly energetic and motivated … a versatile yacht captained by a driven skipper who has won everything in the sport …— Herb McCormick Kinsey redoubled his efforts. If he had been driven before, now there was a manic quality to his work.— David Halberstam
2 : propelled or motivated by something used in combination results-drivena character-driven drama

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Other Words from driven

drivenness \ ˈdri-​vən-​nəs How to pronounce driven (audio) \ noun
He was born two months premature and she has never stopped asking herself whether it was her drivenness, her refusal to rest, that caused it. — Michele Magwood

Examples of driven in a Sentence

They are driven, successful people. a man with a driven need to be loved or liked by everyone
Recent Examples on the Web Tully fits squarely in Heigl's wheelhouse, a boisterous and driven woman who is always the leader, never the follower. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "Review: Katherine Heigl and Sarah Chalke's 'Firefly Lane' is a sappy, soapy mess," 3 Feb. 2021 Both are more likely to be pattern seekers, or hyper-systemizers, strongly driven to analyze or build systems by identifying and experimenting with if-and-then patterns. Simon Baron-cohen, WSJ, "How Autism and Invention Are Connected," 12 Dec. 2020 Sterling, who is also a Republican, said people have trespassed on Raffensperger's property and driven caravans outside the secretary's home. Joey Garrison, USA TODAY, "'It has to stop': Georgia official calls on Trump to 'stop inspiring' death threats over election," 1 Dec. 2020 Leading in front are Maya, who is steady and serious, and Zephyr, a goofy and driven veteran who had come from another musher and had run the race before. Alex Kormann, Star Tribune, "Exhaustion, injury, freezing cold: This Beargrease dog race competitor braves it all to win," 24 Nov. 2020 When everybody works toward a common goal, each department becomes more effective and driven. Doug Claffey,, "Top Workplaces: Employees respond to challenges of COVID-19," 17 Sep. 2020 One swap or no swaps pre-merge, one hidden immunity idol in play per tribe, a compelling and driven cast, and badass challenges. Dalton Ross,, "Survivor Quarantine Questionnaire: James Lim almost created a replica 'f---ing stick' on Ghost Island," 15 Sep. 2020 Meeting folks whose lives have been totally changed by having stable housing and working with and learning from fearless leaders — residents, advocates, housing providers — all sorts of brilliant and driven individuals. Lisa Deaderick, San Diego Union-Tribune, "‘Radical acts of kindness’ motivates the work of San Diego affordable housing advocate," 12 Sep. 2020 That experience helps Meade stay driven to help Alaskans quit -- and stay quit. Anchorage Daily News, "The science of smoking and COVID-19," 12 July 2020

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

1797, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for driven

see drive entry 1

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Statistics for driven

Last Updated

12 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Driven.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for driven



English Language Learners Definition of driven

: very determined to succeed

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Comments on driven

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