strove ˈstrōv How to pronounce strive (audio) also strived ˈstrīvd How to pronounce strive (audio) ; striven ˈstri-vən How to pronounce strive (audio) or strived; striving ˈstrī-viŋ How to pronounce strive (audio)

intransitive verb

: to devote serious effort or energy : endeavor
strive to finish a project
: to struggle in opposition : contend
striver noun
Choose the Right Synonym for strive

attempt, try, endeavor, essay, strive mean to make an effort to accomplish an end.

attempt stresses the initiation or beginning of an effort.

will attempt to photograph the rare bird

try is often close to attempt but may stress effort or experiment made in the hope of testing or proving something.

tried to determine which was the better procedure

endeavor heightens the implications of exertion and difficulty.

endeavored to find crash survivors in the mountains

essay implies difficulty but also suggests tentative trying or experimenting.

will essay a dramatic role for the first time

strive implies great exertion against great difficulty and specifically suggests persistent effort.

continues to strive for peace

Example Sentences

We must all strive to do better. She always strives for perfection. They continue to strive toward their goals.
Recent Examples on the Web This nondescript style is especially relevant to minimalists and those who strive for a capsule wardrobe. Meg Donohue, ELLE, 6 Jan. 2023 Educators may strive to stay ahead of all such obstacles, but this is a losing battle. WSJ, 3 Jan. 2023 This morning, to the dismay of many brand advertisers who strive to be apolitical, Musk used his 114-million-follower platform to endorse the Republican slate of candidates for tomorrow’s midterm elections. Charlie Warzel, The Atlantic, 7 Nov. 2022 Photographers who strive for realism likely won't appreciate the dystopian palette, for instance. PCMAG, 20 Oct. 2022 Hodge is a former school board member, minister and a chief officer of the Brotherhood of Elders Network, a network of Black men who strive to empower other Black men. Sarah Ravani, San Francisco Chronicle, 4 Oct. 2022 This award celebrates those who strive to overcome disparities in cancer care to bring quality services to their patients. Scientific American Custom Media, Scientific American, 10 Aug. 2022 For those who strive to always improve, the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow will always be there. Joseph Goodman |, al, 23 July 2022 And its coaches, players and the high school athletes who strive to be a part of it are conscious of the change that’s already happening. Dallas News, 13 July 2022 See More

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

Word History


Middle English, to quarrel, contend, fight, endeavor, from Anglo-French estriver to quarrel, from estri, estrif strife — more at strife

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of strive was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near strive

Cite this Entry

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

Kids Definition


strove ˈstrōv How to pronounce strive (audio) also strived ˈstrīvd How to pronounce strive (audio) ; striven ˈstriv-ən How to pronounce strive (audio) or strived; striving ˈstrī-viŋ How to pronounce strive (audio)
: to try hard : endeavor
strive to win
: to struggle against : contend
striver noun

More from Merriam-Webster on strive

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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