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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Previously secret court filings — some of which were unsealed in March — helped shed light on some of his most daring exploits over roughly 10 years. Alex Ward, Vox, "Felix Sater, the spy, criminal, and mafia-linked business executive tied to Trump, explained," 6 Dec. 2018 Their off-ice exploits saw them play to packed houses at their main arena and practice facility. Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times, "Mixed results: A half-century of trial and error with NHL expansion franchises," 5 Dec. 2018 Centered on the family home, its true focus is the family’s housekeeper, Cleo (a memorable Yalitza Aparicio), whom the family both loves and exploits. John Powers, Vogue, "These Were 2018’s 12 Best Movies," 12 Dec. 2018 From the publisher: Beyond Tim Tebow's exploits as a Heisman-winning football player, he is widely known and respected for his exemplary character and personal excellence, which have made him a role model for millions. Fox News, "'This Is the Day' by Tim Tebow," 27 Sep. 2018 The leap does draw gasps and cheers from the audience — both the one seated in the theater, and the onscreen audience of onlookers watching Will's exploits on massive news screens on the street. Katie Walsh, chicagotribune.com, "'Skyscraper' review: Dwayne Johnson shows off his dramatic acting chops," 11 July 2018 The Spurs’ summertime exploits are set to shift from the mountains of Salt Lake City to the desert of Sin City. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "What to watch for as Spurs summer leaguers hit Las Vegas," 6 July 2018 Since Windows 7 was originally released in 2009, hackers have had a longer time to discover exploits and create clever tactics to compromise users. Ken Colburn, azcentral, "Still running Windows 7? Probably not for much longer; Here's what you need to know," 2 July 2018 The Wyoming listening session was up there with the golden-era Kanye West exploits: an absurdist stunt, an immense display of ego and a genuinely new contribution to the rich history of hip-hop excess. Jon Caramanica, New York Times, "Into the Wild With Kanye West," 25 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

If there was a scene that called for nudity, the team actively made sure the actors never felt exploited by it. Carl Kelsch, Marie Claire, "'Cam' Is the Sex-Positive Horror Movie You Have to See," 24 Dec. 2018 Microsoft has issued an emergency update that fixes a critical Internet Explorer vulnerability that attackers are actively exploiting on the Internet. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Microsoft issues emergency update to fix critical IE flaw under active exploit," 20 Dec. 2018 This attack exploited the complex interaction of multiple issues in Facebook’s code, the company said. Michael Simon, PCWorld, "Facebook account hack FAQ: What happened, how it affects you, and what you should do now," 29 Sep. 2018 This method exploits the small dip in a star's brightness as the planet passes between its sun and the instrument. Meghan Bartels, Space.com, "New NASA Planet Hunter May Find 10,000 Alien Worlds in Just Two Years," 8 Aug. 2018 The measure would close a loophole that drug traffickers exploit: While private shippers like FedEx and UPS are required to obtain advance electronic information on most shipments, the Postal Service is not. Matthew Garcia, Washington Post, "What A U.S.-China Trade War Could Mean For The Opioid Epidemic," 9 July 2018 The measure would close a loophole that drug traffickers exploit: While private shippers like FedEx and UPS are required to obtain advance electronic information on most shipments, the Postal Service is not. Matthew Garcia, USA TODAY, "What a U.S.-China trade war could mean for opioid epidemic," 6 July 2018 Large numbers of asylum-seekers sitting idle at the border creates a vulnerable population that smugglers could easily exploit. Rafael Carranza, azcentral, "Jeff Sessions to asylum seekers: go to the ports, but at the border that's no easy task," 18 June 2018 But there are some pieces of hardware within a modern missile that a clever enemy could exploit. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "What Happens to a Cruise Missile Captured by the Russians," 26 Apr. 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.

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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

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Statistics for exploit

Last Updated

6 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exploit

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

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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.

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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

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