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 But, as is often the case with driven people who genuinely have a love for academia, that wasn’t enough to fulfill her. Ruhama Wolle, Glamour, 13 July 2021 Everyone's driven and ready to bring Bringston Univeristy to life and bring the characters to life. Alamin Yohannes,, 6 July 2021 There are easier ways for a smart and driven person to earn a living. Los Angeles Times, 28 June 2021 The war has left half a million people dead and driven millions out of the country since the conflict erupted in 2011. Frank Jordans, Star Tribune, 1 June 2021 Still, unemployment and economic downturns can open up lots of opportunities for driven and flexible entrepreneurs. Roy Ferman, Forbes, 25 May 2021 My family has played a huge role in shaping me into a driven and loving person. Mary Colurso |, al, 15 May 2021 And readers get a penetrating look at one driven writer's work process — Rawlings' correspondence with her editor, the legendary Maxwell Perkins, is the apotheosis of a nurturing writer-editor relationship. Mary Ann Gwinn Special To The Star Tribune, Star Tribune, 23 Apr. 2021 Subsidy cuts combined with higher taxes on everything from cigarettes and beer to airline tickets have damaged middle-class spending and driven millions of poorer Egyptians into poverty. Amira El-fekki, WSJ, 4 Mar. 2021

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

18 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Driven.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for driven



English Language Learners Definition of driven

: very determined to succeed

More from Merriam-Webster on driven

Nglish: Translation of driven for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of driven for Arabic Speakers


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