en·​ter·​pris·​ing | \ ˈen-tər-ˌprī-ziŋ How to pronounce enterprising (audio) , ˈen-tə-ˌprī-\

Definition of enterprising

: marked by an independent energetic spirit and by readiness to act an enterprising young reporter

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Examples of enterprising in a Sentence

As an enterprising young reporter, she covered many important stories. the company is claiming that there will be huge financial rewards for enterprising sales representatives

Recent Examples on the Web

An enterprising photographer may be skulking nearby; a tweet-happy bystander can instantaneously ruin someone's life. Marcia Desanctis, Town & Country, "Mark Sanford, Act II," 14 Feb. 2013 Many of those governments were also conflicted as hundreds of thousands of their most enterprising young citizens had left home to flock to opportunities in Britain. Laurence Norman, WSJ, "Behind the Brexit Chaos, a Faulty U.K. Negotiating Strategy," 14 Dec. 2018 Now, with only a limited number of supplies and funds, a curious and enterprising individual can design and build anything from home automation systems to personalized robots in the comfort of their own homes, and with little outside instruction. Popular Mechanics Shop Team, Popular Mechanics, "Learn Robot Engineering With These Four DIY Kits," 4 Oct. 2018 Each island offers a different deal for enterprising captains: five ginger for two tea, two tea for two chilis, or two cloves for half a boatload of less valuable goods. Owen Duffy, Ars Technica, "Century: Eastern Wonders makes cardboard spice trading fun again," 6 Oct. 2018 As the Mother Road exploded in popularity after World War II, enterprising business owners in nothing towns responded by dreaming up absurd roadside attractions to advertise along the route. Ashlea Halpern, Condé Nast Traveler, "Long Live Route 66," 19 July 2018 In Herriman, Utah, an enterprising school publication ran into trouble after digging into a subject that administrators at Herriman High School had tried to keep secret: the reason for the dismissal of a popular history teacher. Jaclyn Peiser, New York Times, "Hard News. Angry Administration. Teenage Journalists Know What It’s Like.," 1 July 2018 An enterprising theatergoer could see all three in a single weekend. Mark Swed, latimes.com, "Before ‘Hamilton,’ 100 years of American music theater and how it’s told the story of who we are," 29 June 2018 In that tournament, one side of the draw became stacked with most of the favorites, while the other half featured a bunch of enterprising upstarts – plus Portugal, which had floundered its way through the group with three ties. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Cristiano Ronaldo's missed penalty costs Portugal – and could haunt it forever," 25 June 2018

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

1601, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for enterprising

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for enterprising

The first known use of enterprising was in 1601

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More Definitions for enterprising



English Language Learners Definition of enterprising

: having or showing the ability or desire to do new and difficult things


en·​ter·​pris·​ing | \ ˈen-tər-ˌprī-ziŋ How to pronounce enterprising (audio) \

Kids Definition of enterprising

: bold and energetic in trying or experimenting A few enterprising pioneers founded a new town.

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More from Merriam-Webster on enterprising

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with enterprising

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for enterprising

Spanish Central: Translation of enterprising

Nglish: Translation of enterprising for Spanish Speakers

Comments on enterprising

What made you want to look up enterprising? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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