pursue

verb
pur·​sue | \ pər-ˈsü How to pronounce pursue (audio) , -ˈsyü\
pursued; pursuing

Definition of pursue

transitive verb

1 : to follow in order to overtake, capture, kill, or defeat
2 : to find or employ measures to obtain or accomplish : seek pursue a goal
3 : to proceed along pursues a northern course
4a : to engage in pursue a hobby
b : to follow up or proceed with pursue an argument
5 : to continue to afflict : haunt was pursued by horrible memories
6 : chase entry 2 sense 1c pursued by dozens of fans

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Other Words from pursue

pursuer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for pursue

Synonyms

bird-dog, chase, course, dog, follow, hound, run, shadow, tag, tail, trace, track, trail

Antonyms

guide, lead, pilot

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Choose the Right Synonym for pursue

chase, pursue, follow, trail mean to go after or on the track of something or someone. chase implies going swiftly after and trying to overtake something fleeing or running. a dog chasing a cat pursue suggests a continuing effort to overtake, reach, or attain. pursued the criminal through narrow streets follow puts less emphasis upon speed or intent to overtake. friends followed me home in their car trail may stress a following of tracks or traces rather than a visible object. trail deer trailed a suspect across the country

Examples of pursue in a Sentence

It is this peace among the Great Powers—at least for the near term—that makes it truly possible both to pursue my vision of the post-Cold War world and, at the same time, to hedge against failure by maintaining the capacity to protect ourselves and our interests … — Robert S. McNamara, In Retrospect, 1995 The monster truck pursued him at insane speeds, through phone booths and gas pumps and even over cliffs, but he never knew why. — Hunter S. Thompson, Rolling Stone, 14-28 July 1994 In a world of nation-states the assumption that governments will pursue their own interests gives order and predictability to international affairs. — Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., American Heritage, 3 May/June 1994 Hounds pursued the fox for miles. The criminal is being pursued by police. He chose to pursue a college degree. She wants to pursue a legal career.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Some Democrats have responded to recent white-nationalist attacks by proposing a federal domestic-terrorism law that would give the government new powers to pursue white-nationalist groups. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "The NRA Is Not a Domestic Terrorist Organization," 17 Sep. 2019 In that regard, the series has reached its timely thesis: To pursue the American dream is, too often, to corrupt it, eventually tarnishing the idea of success itself. Shirley Li, The Atlantic, "The Tragicomedy of the American Dream," 16 Sep. 2019 In 1947 Lazowski made his way to America to pursue a life dedicated to faith and to ensuring the horrors of the Holocaust are never forgotten. courant.com, "Community News For The West Hartford Edition," 16 Sep. 2019 If members of Congress decided to pursue impeachment, Kavanaugh would face the same process as a president or vice president. Jason Silverstein, CBS News, "Could Brett Kavanaugh be impeached? Here's what the Constitution says," 16 Sep. 2019 As a result of Danney’s refusal to provide evidence regarding his business practices, Plaintiff must be permitted to pursue this same information from these athletes directly. Brent Schrotenboer, USA TODAY, "Tim Tebow now expected as witness in two drug trials against his trainer," 16 Sep. 2019 Nudo left Driscoll to pursue other opportunities, and eventually Racki became the head coach in 1998. Rich Mayor, chicagotribune.com, "Football notebook: Nazareth, Fenwick coaches share bond that dates to Driscoll days," 15 Sep. 2019 Armor's record of missing staffing requirements, providing poor care and falsifying inmates' records prompted supervisors to pursue the study of the feasibility of having the county provide medical care. Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Report recommends against Milwaukee County moving inmate medical services in-house," 13 Sep. 2019 Yesterday, 145 chief executives wrote to Congress, urging lawmakers to pursue gun reform measures like stricter background checks and tougher ‘red flag’ laws. Fortune, "Female CEOs Up Their Activism: The Broadsheet," 13 Sep. 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for pursue

Middle English, from Anglo-French pursure, pursiure, from Latin prosequi, from pro- forward + sequi to follow — more at pro-, sue

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Statistics for pursue

Last Updated

14 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pursue

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

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More Definitions for pursue

pursue

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pursue

: to follow and try to catch or capture (someone or something) for usually a long distance or time
: to try to get or do (something) over a period of time
: to be involved in (an activity)

pursue

verb
pur·​sue | \ pər-ˈsü How to pronounce pursue (audio) \
pursued; pursuing

Kids Definition of pursue

1 : to follow after in order to catch or destroy : chase A dog pursued the fleeing cat.
2 : to follow up or proceed with He won't answer, so why pursue it?
3 : to try to get or do over a period of time I've decided to pursue a degree in geography.

Other Words from pursue

pursuer noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on pursue

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pursue

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pursue

Spanish Central: Translation of pursue

Nglish: Translation of pursue for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pursue for Arabic Speakers

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