pur·​suit | \ pər-ˈsüt How to pronounce pursuit (audio) , -ˈsyüt\

Definition of pursuit

1 : the act of pursuing
2 : an activity that one engages in as a vocation, profession, or avocation : occupation

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Choose the Right Synonym for pursuit

work, employment, occupation, calling, pursuit, métier, business mean a specific sustained activity engaged in especially in earning one's living. work may apply to any purposeful activity whether remunerative or not. her work as a hospital volunteer employment implies work for which one has been engaged and is being paid by an employer. your employment with this firm is hereby terminated occupation implies work in which one engages regularly especially as a result of training. his occupation as a trained auto mechanic calling applies to an occupation viewed as a vocation or profession. the ministry seemed my true calling pursuit suggests a trade, profession, or avocation followed with zeal or steady interest. her family considered medicine the only proper pursuit métier implies a calling or pursuit for which one believes oneself to be especially fitted. acting was my one and only métier business suggests activity in commerce or the management of money and affairs. the business of managing a hotel

Examples of pursuit in a Sentence

The hounds were running in the woods in pursuit of a fox. She enjoys reading, knitting, and other quiet pursuits.

Recent Examples on the Web

In a show of filial piety, Meiling finally gives up her pursuit and wishes her mother happiness. The Economist, "A counter-revolutionary love story from Hong Kong," 14 Sep. 2019 Vela is expected to return Saturday, resuming his pursuit of the league’s single-season record of 31 goals, set last year by Atlanta United’s Josef Martinez. Kevin Baxter, Los Angeles Times, "Where do the Galaxy and LAFC stand in the MLS playoff race?," 13 Sep. 2019 Banning fracking could have a dramatic impact on the economy in Pennsylvania, a state Democrats consider a must-win in their pursuit of the White House. Nicholas Riccardi, The Denver Post, "Democrats step on shaky political ground with fracking bans," 10 Sep. 2019 McClellan-Wiese’s death has added to their grief, but her pursuit of justice lives on in them. Elizabeth Zavala, ExpressNews.com, "Moms keep up fight despite loss of ally," 9 Sep. 2019 Walls or barriers offer little hindrance in his pursuit of a play. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros worry about George Springer after loss to Brewers," 4 Sep. 2019 As the chase made its way into Los Angeles, Lightfoot said officers decided to end their pursuit and let the carjacker go because his driving became more erratic — endangering pedestrians and other motorists. Andy Nguyen, Glendale News-Press, "La Crescenta carjacking suspect remains on the loose," 3 Sep. 2019 The driver reversed direction, and the pursuit continued on Route 6 east, the release said. Adam Sennott, BostonGlobe.com, "Suspect arrested after shooting at Cape Cod liquor store," 30 Aug. 2019 As the pursuit continued down I-15, the driver got off the freeway at one point, but then jumped back on and kept going south. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Woman in stolen car leads CHP on chase before crashing in Escondido," 30 Aug. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pursuit

Middle English, from Anglo-French pursute, from pursure

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Statistics for pursuit

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pursuit

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

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More Definitions for pursuit



English Language Learners Definition of pursuit

: the act of following or chasing someone or something
: an attempt to find, achieve, or get something
: an activity that is done for pleasure


pur·​suit | \ pər-ˈsüt How to pronounce pursuit (audio) \

Kids Definition of pursuit

1 : the act of chasing, following, or trying to obtain the pursuit of wealth
2 : activity sense 2, occupation the pursuit of teaching

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More from Merriam-Webster on pursuit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pursuit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pursuit

Spanish Central: Translation of pursuit

Nglish: Translation of pursuit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pursuit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pursuit

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miscellaneous remnants or debris

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