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

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

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Other Words from project


projectable \ prə-​ˈjek-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce projectable (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


an ambitious project to develop the city's waterfront


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

Work will get underway this summer on the second phase of a massive project linking Interstates 294 and 57, according to the Illinois Tollway. Mike Nolan, Daily Southtown, "Work to start on next phase of linking I-294 and I-57," 11 June 2019 Gabriele said the opportunity to build a major mixed-used development project near a lake is what initially brought his firm on board. Mike Glenn, Houston Chronicle, "Katy Boardwalk District hotel construction to begin this year," 10 June 2019 It had been built as a side project in the late 2000s by two like-minded hobbyists to allow people who had tested their DNA with different companies to upload their genetic profiles and find relatives more easily. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "The First Murder Case to Use Family Tree Forensics Goes to Trial," 10 June 2019 These include reporting and disclosure requirements—which would likely enhance buyer protection, but also crimp a project’s production and marketing strategy. Matthew De Silva, Quartz, "Crypto backers want special regulatory treatment—here’s why it probably won’t happen," 10 June 2019 But these flights of imagination were still tethered to a colonial project. Ipsita Chakravarty, Quartz India, "How colonialism cost the Himalayas their remoteness," 10 June 2019 The centerpiece is the 101-mile Towpath Trail, a 25-year-old project to restore the historic pathway alongside remnants of the 1832 Ohio & Erie Canal from Cleveland south to Akron, Massillon and New Philadelphia. Steven Litt,, "Burning River legacy: Towpath Trail spurs rediscovery of Cuyahoga Valley, erasing east-west divide," 9 June 2019 Working this way puts a high-dollar project within reach of even small churches. Kaiser Health News,, "Churches take lead in helping poor with medical debt," 9 June 2019 The chorus is a worthy project both in education and community: Its members are schooled in traditional bel canto, and the results are impressive from so young a group. Daniel Gelernter, National Review, "‘Bach to the Future’: Concert to Make One Feel Lucky to Live in New York," 8 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Critics pointed out that the state’s heavy snowfall this winter ended all drought conditions, though the state is projected to experience increasingly arid conditions. Justin Wingerter, The Denver Post, "Cory Gardner slams Trump tariffs: “Turning our backs on American workers and consumers”," 7 June 2019 For this upcoming school year, an enrollment growth of 850 students across all grade levels is being projected, school officials have said. Jess Nocera,, "Howard schools to begin redistricting process," 7 June 2019 Mayor Randall Woodfin says the stadium is projected to provide the city with $10 million in additional tax revenue yearly, which will go to the Neighborhood Revitalization Fund. Tara Massouleh |,, "Birmingham update: Protective Stadium, rideshare, and more," 7 June 2019 Many of the latter are in the Trinity-Divide and Plumas National Forest, which is projected to be accessible starting in mid- to late June. Tom Stienstra,, "Planning a trip to California’s far north this summer? Read this first.," 7 June 2019 In the pipeline As many as 1,300 new apartments are projected to be delivered Downtown this year, according to Downtown Indy Inc. Alexandria Burris, Indianapolis Star, "More luxury apartments drive up Downtown Indianapolis vacancy rate, but rents remain steep," 6 June 2019 But in the next breath, Brennan warned that a $426,000-plus deficit is projected for fiscal year 2019-20. Karen Pearlman, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Lemon Grove starts strategizing on plans moving forward," 6 June 2019 Camden is projected to return its starting frontcourt from last season, led by senior-to-be Lance Ware, as well as Jerome Brewer and TaQuan Woodley, both of whom will be juniors. Phil Anastasia,, "Camden High to hire Rick Brunson as boys’ basketball coach," 5 June 2019 The National Weather Service predicts only a 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms by Friday night, while Saturday is projected to be sunny with a high near 96. Rebecca Hennes, Houston Chronicle, "Freeway closure will make travel to Galveston difficult June 7-9," 5 June 2019

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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Statistics for project

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for project

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

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More Definitions for project



English Language Learners Definition of project

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: 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
: a task or problem in school that requires careful work over a long period of time



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

: to plan, calculate, or estimate (something) for a time in the future
: to cause (light, a picture, a movie, etc.) to appear on a surface
: to have or show (a particular quality, image, etc., that can be seen by other people)


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

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More from Merriam-Webster on project

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with project

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for project

Spanish Central: Translation of project

Nglish: Translation of project for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of project for Arabic Speakers

Comments on project

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


showing courage and determination

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