n. pl. in·dus·tries
a. The sector of an economy made up of manufacturing enterprises: government regulation of industry.
b. A sector of an economy: the advertising industry. See Synonyms at business.
2. Energetic devotion to a task or an endeavor; diligence: demonstrated great intelligence and industry as a prosecutor.
3. Ongoing work or study associated with a specified subject or figure: the Civil War industry; the Hemingway industry.
a. A collection of artifacts or tools made from a specified material: a Mesolithic bone industry.
b. A standardized tradition of toolmaking associated with a specified tool or culture: a stone hand-axe industry; the Acheulian industry.
5. Obsolete Cleverness or skill.
[Middle English industrie, skill, from Old French, from Latin industria, diligence, from feminine of industrius, diligent; see ster-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
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.