ground·​work | \ ˈgrau̇nd-ˌwərk How to pronounce groundwork (audio) \

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

Other candidates have had to spend millions to acquire donors on Facebook, instead (of) communicating with voters and laying the groundwork to beat’’ President Donald Trump, the memo states. Brian Slodysko,, "Democrats’ window to qualify for next debate closing quickly," 28 Aug. 2019 Consider laying the groundwork to launch a website, a blog or a social media account. Tribune Content Agency,, "Horoscope for Aug. 27, 2019: Taurus, dive into the data stream; Aquarius, expand your knowledge base," 27 Aug. 2019 North Carolina Raleigh: Legislation that prohibits production and possession of smokable hemp next year while laying regulatory groundwork to expand the state’s industrial and medicinal hemp industry has cleared a second legislative chamber. USA TODAY, "‘Stranger’ tourists, Phish and the plague, kinkajou attack: News from around our 50 states," 22 Aug. 2019 Because business investment usually lays the groundwork for future economic activity, including hiring workers and producing goods, slow investment today means sluggish growth down the road. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, "Why Trump's payroll tax cut wouldn't do much for the economy," 20 Aug. 2019 Jaguar’s marketing team spent years laying the groundwork to introduce the I-Pace. Colin Beresford, Los Angeles Times, "‘Tesla killers’ are having a really hard time killing Tesla," 19 Aug. 2019 An experienced ranger isn’t stationed in Coltsville this summer, but Fellner says the groundwork for the national park is still being put in place. Kenneth R. Gosselin,, "After five years, Hartford’s Coltsville National Historical Park stalled as feds decide whether to accept buildings for visitor center, exhibit space," 19 Aug. 2019 That cultural groundwork has created a new generation of Hawaiians, including some who say their land was wrongfully annexed by the U.S. more than a century ago. Jason Davis, NBC News, "A huge telescope in Hawaii could lead us to alien life. First it has to get off the ground.," 18 Aug. 2019 He is expected to find a way, sooner rather than later, to reshape Russia’s Constitution or to somehow stay on, laying the groundwork far in advance. New York Times, "Putin’s Uncertain Future Shadows a Crackdown on Moscow Protests," 2 Aug. 2019

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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Statistics for groundwork

Last Updated

5 Sep 2019

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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 How to pronounce groundwork (audio) \

Kids Definition of groundwork

: something upon which further work or progress is based

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More from Merriam-Webster on groundwork

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with groundwork

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for groundwork

Spanish Central: Translation of groundwork

Nglish: Translation of groundwork for Spanish Speakers

Comments on groundwork

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


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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