1. A conscientious or concerted effort toward an end; an earnest attempt.
2. Purposeful or industrious activity; enterprise.
v. en·deav·ored, en·deav·or·ing, en·deav·ors
To attempt (fulfillment of a responsibility or an obligation, for example) by employment or expenditure of effort: endeavored to improve the quality of life in the inner city.
To work with a set or specified goal or purpose.
[Middle English endevour, from endeveren, to make an effort, from (putten) in dever, (to put oneself) in duty, make it one's duty : in, in; see IN1 + dever, duty (from Old French deveir, devoir, duty; see DEVOIR).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.