ground·work | \ˈgrau̇nd-ˌwərk \

Definition of groundwork 

: foundation, basis laid the groundwork for a new program also : preparation made beforehand the groundwork was done before the winter tour — Susan Reiter

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Examples of groundwork in a Sentence

they had collectively laid the groundwork for a new kind of art

Recent Examples on the Web

Several antiabortion states have already laid the groundwork to move fast, providing potential test cases that could get before a more conservative court within a year or two. Evan Halper,, "If a reshaped Supreme Court tosses abortion decisions back to states, several would move fast to outlaw the procedures," 29 June 2018 Some see the filing as laying the groundwork for ExxonMobil to counter-sue. Rob Nikolewski,, "Imperial Beach pushes forward with lawsuit against oil companies," 27 June 2018 Jordan, who is laying the groundwork to run as the next Republican leader in the House, is often seen as a proxy for at least 30 or so hard-right members of the Freedom Caucus. Philip Elliott, Time, "Republicans in Congress Search for an Immigration Bill to End Border Crisis," 20 June 2018 King laid out his groundwork for the eradication of poverty, including a guaranteed annual wage, and the construction of 500,000 low-income housing units per year, backed by a $30 billion package as legislative muscle. Matt Stieb, Daily Intelligencer, "The Return of the Poor People’s Campaign," 19 June 2018 While the activity Kaspersky has seen has not turned destructive, researchers there say that hackers have taken steps that echo the early groundwork laid by the Olympic Destroyer group. Brian Barrett, WIRED, "The Olympic Destroyer Hackers May Have Returned For More," 19 June 2018 Even so, the memo shows Trump’s legal team laying the groundwork to push the limits of presidential power. Fortune, "Trump Says He Has 'Absolute Right' to Pardon Himself as Mueller Standoff Drags On," 4 June 2018 Celebrity designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard used the city’s architectural influence as groundwork, then broke the mold with Moroccan and Moorish designs and Art Deco furnishings. Danielle Fox, ELLE Decor, "Martyn Lawrence Bullard Gives the Hotel Californian a Dose of Funk," 29 May 2018 Before sticking them to the upper lash line with Duo Eyelash Glue and tweezers, Nelson laid the groundwork with a blend of matte taupe shadows on her lid. Erika Stalder,, "Kristen Stewart's "Pearl Liner" Hack Will Only Cost You $5," 16 May 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Phrases Related to groundwork

lay the groundwork/foundation

Statistics for groundwork

Last Updated

3 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for groundwork

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

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More Definitions for groundwork



English Language Learners Definition of groundwork

: something that is done at an early stage and that makes later work or progress possible


ground·work | \ˈgrau̇nd-ˌwərk \

Kids Definition of groundwork

: something upon which further work or progress is based

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Comments on groundwork

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