ac·​com·​plish ə-ˈkäm-plish How to pronounce accomplish (audio) -ˈkəm- How to pronounce accomplish (audio)
accomplished; accomplishing; accomplishes

transitive verb

: to bring about (a result) by effort
have much to accomplish today
: to bring to completion : fulfill
accomplish a job
: to succeed in reaching (a stage in a progression)
would starve before accomplishing half the distanceW. H. Hudson †1922
: to equip thoroughly
accomplishable adjective
accomplisher noun
Choose the Right Synonym for accomplish

perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect.

perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill.

performed gymnastics

execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent.

executed the hit-and-run

discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks.

discharged his duties

accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out.

accomplished everything they set out to do

achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties.

achieve greatness

effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles.

effected sweeping reforms

fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities.

fulfilled their ambitions

Example Sentences

There are several different ways to accomplish the same task. Exactly what he thought he would accomplish is unclear.
Recent Examples on the Web Higgins finished her 53rd marathon, an amount that most people won’t accomplish in their lifetime, on Nov. 5, 2022. Natalya Jones, Sun Sentinel, 23 Feb. 2023 Others can try to accomplish early retirement by creating a successful side business, which could help provide some additional income. Stacey Leasca, Travel + Leisure, 7 Feb. 2023 Make realistic goals, try to accomplish them, and don’t beat yourself up when they all don’t get done. Alyssa Jung, Good Housekeeping, 5 Feb. 2023 Behind all the glitz, that really is what WEF participants are trying to accomplish. Chris Perry, Forbes, 26 Jan. 2023 Medicare will face big decisions about how to cover new drugs, and a divided Congress will be left with the leftovers of what Democrats couldn’t accomplish. Rachel Cohrs, STAT, 5 Jan. 2023 Bautista wants to accomplish a lot more than what the MCU offered. Zack Sharf, Variety, 4 Jan. 2023 The other example, though, is even more instructive for what the Buckeyes want to accomplish over the next five months. Nathan Baird, cleveland, 4 Dec. 2022 What should the West want to accomplish above and beyond serving a compelling moral imperative. Josef Joffe, Time, 1 Dec. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accomplish.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


Middle English acomplicen, accomplisshen, borrowed from Anglo-French acomplis-, stem of acomplir, acumplir, from a-, prefix forming transitive verbs (going back to Latin ad- ad-) + complir, cumplir "to complete, fulfill," going back (with conjugation change) to Latin complēre "to fill up, complete" — more at complete entry 1

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of accomplish was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near accomplish

Cite this Entry

“Accomplish.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


ac·​com·​plish ə-ˈkäm-plish How to pronounce accomplish (audio) -ˈkəm- How to pronounce accomplish (audio)
: to bring to a successful finish : perform
accomplishable adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on accomplish

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