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aspire

[uh-spahyuh r] /əˈspaɪər/
verb (used without object), aspired, aspiring.
1.
to long, aim, or seek ambitiously; be eagerly desirous, especially for something great or of high value (usually followed by to, after, or an infinitive):
to aspire after literary immortality; to aspire to be a doctor.
2.
Archaic. to rise up; soar; mount; tower.
Origin
late Middle English
1425-1475
1425-75; late Middle English (< Middle French aspirer) < Latin aspīrāre to breathe upon, pant after, equivalent to a- a-5 + spīrāre to breathe, blow
Related forms
aspirer, noun
aspiringly, adverb
nonaspiring, adjective
unaspiring, adjective
unaspiringly, adverb
Synonyms
1. yearn.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for aspire
  • New York would no longer aspire to be all things to all of its people.
  • Countries don't aspire to things.
  • Now the upper middle class aspire to stay in cities.
  • But for those who aspire to greatness, here is the definitive guide.
  • In this wonder lay not only what man is, but what man might aspire to be.
  • It doesn't aspire to greatness, just goodness.
  • No, I dont aspire to be wealthy.
  • It's definitely something to aspire to.
  • The son can only aspire to achieve the full, clipped, gray mustache on his father's upper lip.
  • Meritocracy is something to aspire to, reality always lags behind.
British Dictionary definitions for aspire

aspire

/əˈspaɪə/
verb (intransitive)
1.
usually foll by to or after. to yearn (for) or have a powerful or ambitious plan, desire, or hope (to do or be something): to aspire to be a great leader
2.
to rise to a great height
Derived Forms
aspirer, noun
aspiring, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Latin aspīrāre to breathe upon, from spīrāre to breathe
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for aspire
v.

"to strive for," c.1400, from Old French aspirer "aspire to; inspire; breathe, breathe on" (12c.), from Latin aspirare "to breathe upon, to breathe," also, in transferred senses, "to be favorable to, assist; to climb up to, to endeavor to obtain, to reach to, to seek to reach; infuse," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + spirare "to breathe" (see spirit (n.)). The notion is of "panting with desire," or perhaps of rising smoke. Related: Aspired; aspiring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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