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

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 But just two weeks before the film's premiere at the high-profile Park City, Utah, event, executive producer Oprah Winfrey bowed out of the project, citing inconsistencies in the story of one of Simmons' accusers, ex-Def Jam executive Drew Dixon. Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY, "He's 'a monster': 'On the Record' gives first-hand accounts of Russell Simmons rape claims," 27 May 2020 Eight of the projects are eligible for reimbursement through Maricopa Association of Government’s Proposition 400 sales tax for transportation. Alison Steinbach, azcentral, "Mesa voters likely to see $100M transportation bond request in November," 27 May 2020 Neither GrayStreet nor WeWork responded to a request for comment on the status of the project. Diego Mendoza-moyers,, "Geekdom, other co-working spaces reopening," 27 May 2020 That strategy should free up funds for the agency to spend on other projects—deep-space exploration and transformative science missions—which presently remain out of reach for private enterprise. Irene Klotz, Scientific American, "Back in Business: NASA Is Set to Return to Human Spaceflight with Historic SpaceX Launch," 27 May 2020 One challenge has been trying to evaluate how candidates collaborate on assessment day group projects via video calls, because the dynamics of taking initiative and interrupting are different from in-person interactions, Mr. Schalkwijk said. Jared Council, WSJ, "Companies Tap Digital Tools to Hire Grads, Host Interns," 26 May 2020 Of the residents attending, two spoke in favor of the project, five spoke against. John Carlisle,, "Detroit neighborhood group sees gentrification as the enemy," 24 May 2020 But in the 1920s, Henry Ford purchased it, part of a project to expand his auto plant into the suburbs by converting grist and saw mills. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan's dam safety unit: 2 staff for entire state, a supervisor, and $397K," 24 May 2020 He was later asked to lead the start-up of the project. Peter Valdes-dapena, CNN, "These are the workers helping GM to build ventilators," 18 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Even before the pandemic, analysts project a softening in the home improvements sector for the second half of the year and into early 2021. Grace Schneider, The Courier-Journal, "What a surge in decks, paint sales in the middle of pandemic says about economic recovery," 28 May 2020 Nonetheless, earlier this month, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) projected that electric vehicle sales would fall 18 percent globally in 2020. Colin Beresford, Car and Driver, "Tesla Cuts Prices on Three Models, Some by as Much as $5000," 27 May 2020 Reservation service OpenTable recently projected that a quarter of US restaurants won’t survive the pandemic., "Dozens of TGI Friday’s to close permanently, CEO says," 26 May 2020 The government projected that the vaccine, if successful, could deliver 30 million doses by September. Fox News, "UK researchers warn of only '50 percent' success for COVID vaccine trial," 25 May 2020 Birmingham projects a 20 percent reduction in revenue, which equates to approximately $18 million for the fiscal year ending June 30, according to city spokesman Rick Journey. William Thornton |, al, "Cities, counties struggling with loss of revenue, need for services," 24 May 2020 Several forecasters project the average cost of a kilowatt-hour of lithium-ion battery capacity to fall below $100 by the mid-2020s. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "The story of cheaper batteries, from smartphones to Teslas," 22 May 2020 The data and consulting firm Tourism Economics projects that U.S. travelers will spend $4.2 billion this Memorial Day, compared with $12.3 billion spent over the weekend last year. Anchorage Daily News, "As Memorial Day tempts Americans outdoors, virus rebound feared," 22 May 2020 The Columbia University study, released Wednesday, projected there could have been almost 54,000 fewer coronavirus deaths if the measures were taken at the start of March. Christopher Brito, CBS News, "Almost 36,000 U.S. coronavirus deaths could have been avoided if social distancing began a week earlier, study finds," 21 May 2020

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

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for project

Last Updated

30 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Project.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for project


How to pronounce project (audio)

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


How to pronounce project (audio)

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
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

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for project

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with project

Spanish Central: Translation of project

Nglish: Translation of project for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of project for Arabic Speakers

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