exploit

noun
ex·​ploit | \ ˈek-ˌsplȯit , ik-ˈsplȯit \

Definition of exploit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: deed, act especially : a notable or heroic act

exploit

verb
ex·​ploit | \ ik-ˈsplȯit , ˈek-ˌsplȯit \
exploited; exploiting; exploits

Definition of exploit (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to make productive use of : utilize exploiting your talents exploit your opponent's weakness
2 : to make use of meanly or unfairly for one's own advantage exploiting migrant farm workers

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from exploit

Verb

exploitability \ ik-​ˌsploi-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē \ noun
exploitable \ ik-​ˈsplȯi-​tə-​bəl \ adjective
exploiter noun

Choose the Right Synonym for exploit

Noun

feat, exploit, achievement mean a remarkable deed. feat implies strength or dexterity or daring. an acrobatic feat exploit suggests an adventurous or heroic act. his exploits as a spy achievement implies hard-won success in the face of difficulty or opposition. her achievements as a chemist

Examples of exploit in a Sentence

Noun

the fanciful exploits of the giant lumberjack Paul Bunyan once famed as an actor, John Wilkes Booth is now remembered for a single exploit, his assassination of Lincoln

Verb

He has never fully exploited his talents. Top athletes are able to exploit their opponents' weaknesses. She said the tragedy had been exploited by the media.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

However complicated things seem to get for the masters of the universe who populate the world of high finance in real life, there’s very little that can compare to the exploits of hedge fund honcho Bobby Axelrod on the Showtime series Billions. The Editors, Town & Country, "Everything We Know So Far About Season 4 of Billions," 20 Dec. 2018 Swaggering commanders boast of their battlefield exploits and fancy vacations, or rally supporters by sowing division and ethnic hatred. Suliman Ali Zway, The Seattle Times, "In Libya, Facebook is used to buy arms, locate foes and kill them," 3 Sep. 2018 Williams writes in a familiar, dinner-party style, delighting guests with tales of her exploits. Lisa Feldman Barrett, New York Times, "How Elastic Is Your Brain?," 25 June 2018 For now, Sater still talks to the press about his exploits. Alex Ward, Vox, "Felix Sater, the spy, criminal, and mafia-linked business executive tied to Trump, explained," 6 Dec. 2018 The Phillies, on the other hand, have gone 6-2 in their last eight games and 9-4 in their last 13, spurred by the aforementioned exploits of Odubel Herrera. Michael Beller, SI.com, "The Table Setter: Red Sox-Yankees Returns; Nolan Arenado's Continued Brilliance," 25 June 2018 Germany were undone by Mexico's counter-attacking exploits and a Hirving Lozano strike mid-way through the first-half proved to be the difference. Joe Marcovitch, Pro Soccer USA, "Germany 0-1 Mexico: Reigning champions stunned by magnificent El Tri in World Cup opener," 17 June 2018 The breakthrough has the potential to drastically increase the threat posed by Rowhammer exploits. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Packets over a LAN are all it takes to trigger serious Rowhammer bit flips," 10 May 2018 As seen through the eyes of Laura Bailey, a tabloid newspaper reporter, Jenny Flynn, a stunt pilot (inspired by the exploits of Elinor Smith), begins the book by swooping under the East River bridges on an audacious flight west. Sam Roberts, New York Times, "Two New Works of Fiction About Mass Transit and a Daring Female Pilot," 2 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

And the surplus of vulnerable and compassionate people attracts sadists and abusers ready to exploit them. WSJ, "Notable & Quotable: Radicals," 13 Dec. 2018 But there’s a huge loophole, and Jones exploited it. Casey Newton, The Verge, "How conspiracy sites keep outsmarting big tech companies," 28 July 2018 Alabama exploited him in that area in last year’s playoffs. Albert Breer, SI.com, "Who Are the Defensive Linemen Expected to Dominate the 2019 NFL Draft?," 12 July 2018 And the very same people who made me ashamed to live here are the ones now exploiting it for clicks and views. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "Concrete utopia," 12 July 2018 The president, knowingly or not, is exploiting a weakness in the democratic immune system. Zack Beauchamp, Vox, "We aren’t alarmed enough about Jeff Sessions’s firing," 8 Nov. 2018 GoFundMe's laudable mission – to facilitate fundraising for worthy causes and goals – has attracted its share of unsavory types looking to exploit tragedies, and the public’s compassion. Elizabeth Llorente, Fox News, "Some outlandish GoFundMe scams from recent years," 12 Sep. 2018 To a lesser degree, the study also found that exploited labor and underreported catch may explain how large vessels afford to fish in international waters. Chris Johns, National Geographic, "High Seas Fishing Isn’t Just Destructive—It’s Unprofitable," 6 June 2018 But Saudi leaders are now looking to exploit another plentiful resource: the sun. Alexandra Zavis, latimes.com, "Oil-rich Saudi Arabia is turning to another resource to power the kingdom — sunshine," 31 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'exploit.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of exploit

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1795, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for exploit

Noun

Middle English espleit, expleit, exploit furtherance, outcome, from Anglo-French, from Latin explicitum, neuter of explicitus, past participle

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about exploit

Statistics for exploit

Last Updated

3 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exploit

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for exploit

exploit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of exploit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an exciting act or action

exploit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of exploit (Entry 2 of 2)

: to get value or use from (something)
: to use (someone or something) in a way that helps you unfairly

exploit

noun
ex·​ploit | \ ˈek-ˌsplȯit \

Kids Definition of exploit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an exciting or daring act

exploit

verb
ex·​ploit | \ ik-ˈsplȯit \
exploited; exploiting

Kids Definition of exploit (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to get the value or use out of exploit an opportunity
2 : to take unfair advantage of He had a reputation for exploiting his workers.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on exploit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with exploit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for exploit

Spanish Central: Translation of exploit

Nglish: Translation of exploit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of exploit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on exploit

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

WORD OF THE DAY

irregularly rounded

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What did you just call me?! A Quiz

  • rows-of-various-emoji
  • If a member of the audience describes your speech as bombastic, does that person mean it is:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!