toward

[prep. tawrd, tohrd, tuh-wawrd, twawrd, twohrd; adj. tawrd, tohrd]
preposition Also, towards.
1.
in the direction of: to walk toward the river.
2.
with a view to obtaining or having; for: They're saving money toward a new house.
3.
in the area or vicinity of; near: Our cabin is toward the top of the hill.
4.
turned to; facing: Her back was toward me.
5.
shortly before; close to: toward midnight.
6.
as a help or contribution to: to give money toward a person's expenses.
7.
with respect to; as regards: his attitude toward women.
adjective
8.
about to come soon; imminent.
9.
going on; in progress; afoot: There is work toward.
10.
propitious; favorable.
11.
Obsolete.
a.
promising or apt, as a student.
b.
compliant; docile.

Origin:
before 900; Middle English; Old English tōweard. See to, -ward

towardness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
toward
 
adj
1.  rare in progress; afoot
2.  obsolete about to happen; imminent
3.  obsolete promising or favourable
 
prep
4.  a variant of towards
 
[Old English tōweard; see to, -ward]
 
'towardness
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

toward
O.E. toweard "in the direction of," prepositional use of toweard (adj.) "coming, approaching," from to (see to) + -weard, from P.Gmc. *-warth, from PIE *wert "turn" (see -ward). Towards with adverbial genitive ending, was in O.E. as toweards.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

toward

see go a long way toward.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Researchers have taken only the first steps toward finding definitive answers
  to both of those questions.
Toward a more rigorous and constructive dialogue on intelligent infrastructure.
Engineers make progress toward new green fuels and energy storage devices.
Common name refers to heavy trunk of mature trees, which is broad at base,
  tapering toward top.
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