pros·​per | \ ˈprä-spər How to pronounce prosper (audio) \
prospered; prospering\ ˈprä-​sp(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce prospering (audio) \

Definition of prosper

intransitive verb

1 : to succeed in an enterprise or activity especially : to achieve economic success
2 : to become strong and flourishing

transitive verb

: to cause to succeed or thrive

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Synonyms for prosper


burgeon (also bourgeon), flourish, thrive

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Examples of prosper in a Sentence

She prospered as a real estate agent. He hopes his business will prosper. No crop can prosper in this heat.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Greggs Plc has largely prospered since Britain voted to leave the European Union almost three years ago. Washington Post, "Greggs, the High Street’s Answer to Nigel Farage," 18 Sep. 2019 In 2018, a crop of movies relying largely on adult women to boost their fortunes prospered, including the PG-13-rated Crazy Rich Asians (also starring Wu), Ocean's 8 and Mamma Mia! Pamela Mcclintock, The Hollywood Reporter, "Box Office: 'Hustlers' Ends Downturn Among 2019 Adult Female-Driven Films," 15 Sep. 2019 Kyle Schwarber and Jason Heyward have prospered after being moved out of the leadoff spot with the return last week of Ben Zobrist, who had led off in six of the last seven games before Tony Kemp batted there Wednesday. Mark Gonzales,, "Kris Bryant’s 1st game after getting a cortisone shot in his knee showed promise. The Cubs need a strong finish from him down the stretch.," 12 Sep. 2019 The Massachusetts economy has prospered along with the national economy in recent years. Ella Nilsen, Vox, "Why isn’t Elizabeth Warren more popular in Massachusetts?," 30 July 2019 From delivering packages as a boy to a long standing leadership role, Maus and Hoffman prospered under his guiding hand., "Deaths in South Florida: 7/12," 12 July 2019 But not everyone has prospered, especially the more rogue factions of the cultural scene, the street artists who do their own thing. Ray Mark Rinaldi, The Know, "For Denver, Crush Walls is a street art fest. For street artists, it’s a show of real respect.," 1 Sep. 2019 It was built on the cuisines of people arriving from the Old World – Germans, Italians, Irish, and Jews, among others – whose later generations have prospered and largely dispersed from the homogeneous neighborhoods of their ancestors. Craig Laban,, "Philly's best ethnic food neighborhoods | Craig LaBan," 4 June 2018 As one species starts forcing out its competitors, its rising population allows more of its predators to prosper, too. Quanta Magazine, "Evolution Saves Species From ‘Kill the Winner’ Disasters," 12 Feb. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for prosper

Middle English, from Anglo-French prosperer, from Latin prosperare to cause to succeed, from prosperus favorable

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Statistics for prosper

Last Updated

11 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for prosper

The first known use of prosper was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for prosper



English Language Learners Definition of prosper

: to become very successful usually by making a lot of money
: to become very active, healthy, or strong


pros·​per | \ ˈprä-spər How to pronounce prosper (audio) \
prospered; prospering

Kids Definition of prosper

1 : to become successful usually by making money

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More from Merriam-Webster on prosper

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prosper

Spanish Central: Translation of prosper

Nglish: Translation of prosper for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prosper for Arabic Speakers

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