engage

verb
en·​gage | \ in-ˈgāj How to pronounce engage (audio) , en- \
engaged; engaging

Definition of engage

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to offer (something, such as one's life or word) as backing to a cause or aim : to expose to risk for the attainment or support of some end engaged his all in the king's cause
2a obsolete : to entangle or entrap in or as if in a snare or bog
b : to attract and hold by influence or power
c : to interlock with : mesh also : to cause (mechanical parts) to mesh engage the clutch
3 : to bind (someone, such as oneself) to do something especially : to bind by a pledge to marry
4a : to provide occupation for : involve engage him in a new project
b : to arrange to obtain the use or services of : hire engage a lawyer
5a : to hold the attention of : engross her work engages her completely
b : to induce to participate engaged the shy boy in conversation
6a : to enter into contest or battle with engage the enemy
b : to bring together or interlock (weapons)
7 : to deal with especially at length

intransitive verb

1a : to pledge oneself : promise
b : to make a guarantee he engages for the honesty of his brother
2a : to begin and carry on an enterprise or activity used with in engaged in trade for many years
b : to do or take part in something used with in engage in healthy activitiesengage in bad conduct
c : to give attention to something : deal failing to engage with the problem
3 : to enter into conflict or battle
4 : to come together and interlock the gears engaged

engagé

adjective
en·​ga·​gé | \ ˌäⁿ-ˌgä-ˈzhā How to pronounce engagé (audio) \

Definition of engagé (Entry 2 of 2)

: committed to or supportive of a cause

Did you know?

Engagé is the past participle of the French verb engager, meaning "to engage." The French have used "engagé" since the 19th century to describe socially or politically active people. The term became particularly fashionable in the wake of World War II, when French writers, artists, and intellectuals felt it was increasingly important for them to take a stand on political or social issues and represent their attitudes in their art. By 1946, English speakers had adopted the word for their own politically relevant writing or art, and within a short time "engagé" was being used generally for any passionate commitment to a cause.

Examples of engage in a Sentence

Verb He was engaged as a tutor. He sure can engage an audience. The story engaged my interest. The troops prepared to engage the enemy. The troops prepared to engage with the enemy.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Attendees will be able to watch films, visit exhibits and engage in compelling dialogue and conversations around stories, storytelling, and art virtually. Aramide Tinubu, Essence, 14 Jan. 2022 This will be the second annual Greendale Staff Day of Service where district employees will engage in opportunities to improve the community. Bob Dohr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 11 Jan. 2022 Being a skater meant Dr. Greenleaf was under constant pressure to maintain a low body weight and to engage in restrictive, unhealthy diet and exercise behaviors that were framed as precisely the opposite. Marie Southard Ospina, SELF, 11 Jan. 2022 In partnership with the Nordonia Hills and Twinsburg chapters of Chamber of Commerce, it is designed to provide fundamentals, common terminology and engage in discussions leading participants to explore the subjects further. Joan Rusek, cleveland, 10 Jan. 2022 But the rising deaths raise questions about how far the agency should go with pursuits of smugglers and migrants, and when and how agents should engage in high-speed chases. New York Times, 9 Jan. 2022 An introduction to studying architecture at the college level, participants work through design exercises, receive one-on-one feedback from instructors and current UIC students, and engage in group discussions and tutorials. Darcel Rockett, chicagotribune.com, 7 Jan. 2022 Frostpunk, a city builder where your citizens can engage in desperate cannibalism, is renowned for being … less upbeat. Mark Hill, Wired, 6 Jan. 2022 But coming just after Trump’s demands that state lawmakers engage in extra-legal measures to overturn an election, the impact could be significant. Rick Klein, ABC News, 5 Jan. 2022

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Adjective

1946, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for engage

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French engager, from en- + gage pledge, gage

Adjective

French, past participle of engager to engage

Learn More About engage

Time Traveler for engage

Time Traveler

The first known use of engage was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near engage

Engadine

engage

engagé

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Statistics for engage

Last Updated

19 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Engage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/engage. Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for engage

engage

verb

English Language Learners Definition of engage

: to hire (someone) to perform a particular service : to pay for (help, services, etc.)
: to get and keep (someone's attention, interest, etc.)
: to start fighting against (an opponent)

engage

verb
en·​gage | \ in-ˈgāj How to pronounce engage (audio) \
engaged; engaging

Kids Definition of engage

1 : to catch and keep fixed (as someone's attention) The story engaged my interest.
2 : to take part in or cause to take part in something He engages in many school activities.
3 : to enter into contest or battle with Soldiers engaged the enemy.
4 : to arrange for the services or use of : employ I suggest you engage a lawyer.
5 : mesh The gears engaged.

More from Merriam-Webster on engage

Nglish: Translation of engage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of engage for Arabic Speakers

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