proj·​ect | \ ˈprä-ˌjekt How to pronounce project (audio) , -jikt also ˈprō- \

Essential Meaning of project

1 : a planned piece of work that has a specific purpose (such as to find information or to make something new) and that usually requires a lot of time an ambitious project a research/construction project The repair turned out to be quite a project. [=it took a lot of time and effort to do]
2 : a task or problem in school that requires careful work over a long period of time a science project

Full Definition of project

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a specific plan or design : scheme
2 obsolete : idea
3 : a planned undertaking: such as
a : a definitely formulated piece of research
b : a large usually government-supported undertaking
c : a task or problem engaged in usually by a group of students to supplement and apply classroom studies
4 : a usually public housing development consisting of houses or apartments built and arranged according to a single plan


pro·​ject | \ prə-ˈjekt How to pronounce project (audio) \
projected; projecting; projects

Definition of project (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to devise in the mind : design
b : to plan, figure, or estimate for the future
2 : to throw or cast forward : thrust
3 : to put or set forth : present for consideration
4 : to cause to jut out
5 : to cause (light or shadow) to fall into space or (an image) to fall on a surface
6 : to reproduce (something, such as a point, line, or area) on a surface by motion in a prescribed direction
7 : to display outwardly especially to an audience
8 : to attribute (one's own ideas, feelings, or characteristics) to other people or to objects a nation is an entity on which one can project many of the worst of one's instinctsThe Times Literary Supplement (London)

intransitive verb

1 : to jut out : protrude
2a : to come across vividly : give an impression
b : to make oneself heard clearly

Other Words from project


projectable \ prə-​ˈjek-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce project (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for project


plan, design, plot, scheme, project mean a method devised for making or doing something or achieving an end. plan always implies mental formulation and sometimes graphic representation. plans for a house design often suggests a particular pattern and some degree of achieved order or harmony. a design for a new dress plot implies a laying out in clearly distinguished sections with attention to their relations and proportions. the plot of the play scheme stresses calculation of the end in view and may apply to a plan motivated by craftiness and self-interest. a scheme to defraud the government project often stresses imaginative scope and vision. a project to develop the waterfront

Examples of project in a Sentence

Noun an ambitious project to develop the city's waterfront Verb He projected next year's costs as being slightly higher than this year's. It's difficult to project funding needs so far into the future. an athlete who projects a positive image to young people We need an actor who projects a tough-guy image.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The project already has a following of more than 8,000 people on Facebook. Hannah Kirby, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 20 Nov. 2021 The project has the support of the city's economic team, Louisville Forward. Lucas Aulbach, The Courier-Journal, 20 Nov. 2021 The total project cost is $401.3 million with $158.1 million in funding provided through the Federal Transit Administration’s Capital Investment Grants program. Jen Fifield, The Arizona Republic, 20 Nov. 2021 The Elmira project was among the last to tap CCHIP financing. Greg Jefferson, San Antonio Express-News, 19 Nov. 2021 Tsai said the upgrade project showed the strength of Taiwan's cooperation with the U.S. defense industry. Arkansas Online, 19 Nov. 2021 The latter is funded with $2 million from Congress’ COVID-19 stimulus package, while the former takes advantage of $2 million from the developers of the Centennial Yards project downtown, fulfilling a campaign promise Bottoms made four years ago. Tamar Hallerman, ajc, 19 Nov. 2021 Howard County resident Sean Rulifson, a construction project manager, said high gas prices won’t factor into his decision to drive to Cumberland, Md., to visit vaccinated in-laws for Thanksgiving. Washington Post, 19 Nov. 2021 After an offseason of transfer turnover, Tucker’s rebuild project still seemed to be at the foundational stage. Nathan Baird, cleveland, 19 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb By the end of this century, researchers project that these dry-to-wet precipitation events could increase by 25 to 100 percent in California. Washington Post, 17 Nov. 2021 Employers project that their health benefit costs will rise more than 5% for next year, according to a recent survey by Willis Towers Watson, an advisory firm. Tami Luhby, CNN, 10 Nov. 2021 Federal health officials project that in the first week, 15 million doses of the two-shot regimen will be shipped. Cindy Krischer Goodman,, 3 Nov. 2021 Analysts project the Japanese giant to outsell GM for the rest of the year and possibly into 2022, according to Cox. Diego Mendoza-moyers, San Antonio Express-News, 2 Nov. 2021 Either way, the Panthers project to get Christian McCaffrey back this week. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, 2 Nov. 2021 Analysts project the volume of old batteries available for recycling will grow exponentially in the coming decade. Merrill Goozner, The New Republic, 28 Oct. 2021 Conservative estimates project that Africa’s population of 1.3 billion will double by 2050. Yoweri K. Museveni, WSJ, 24 Oct. 2021 Federal health officials project that in the first week, 15 million doses of the two-shot regimen will be shipped. Compiled Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 23 Oct. 2021

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for project


Middle English projecte, from Medieval Latin projectum, from Latin, neuter of projectus, past participle of proicere to throw forward, from pro- + jacere to throw — more at jet


Anglo-French projecter, from Latin projectus, past participle

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Time Traveler for project

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

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Last Updated

21 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Project.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Nov. 2021.

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More Definitions for project


proj·​ect | \ ˈprä-ˌjekt How to pronounce project (audio) , -jikt \

Kids Definition of project

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a plan or scheme to do something home improvement projects
2 : a task or problem in school that requires work over a period of time and is often displayed or presented a science project
3 : a group of houses or apartment buildings built according to a single plan


pro·​ject | \ prə-ˈjekt How to pronounce project (audio) \
projected; projecting

Kids Definition of project (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to stick out The rock projected above the ground.
2 : to cause to fall on a surface The machine projects motion pictures on a screen.
3 : to send or throw forward


transitive verb
pro·​ject | \ prə-ˈjekt How to pronounce project (audio) \

Medical Definition of project

: to attribute or assign (something in one's own mind or a personal characteristic) to a person, group, or object the patient projected hostility onto the therapist

intransitive verb

: to connect by sending nerve fibers or processes cells of the lateral geniculate body project to the back part of the cerebral cortex

More from Merriam-Webster on project

Nglish: Translation of project for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of project for Arabic Speakers


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