Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A chivalrous or adventurous undertaking.
  • n. Chivalrous daring or prowess.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An enterprise or endeavor, especially a quest or adventure.
  • n. The qualities which prompt one to undertake difficult and dangerous exploits; chivalric prowess.
  • v. To undertake.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An enterprise; endeavor; adventure.
  • n. The qualifies which prompt one to undertake difficult and dangerous exploits.
  • transitive v. To undertake.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To undertake.
  • n. An undertaking; an enterprise; an adventure; also, adventurousness. Also emprize.

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from feminine past participle of emprendre, to undertake, from Vulgar Latin *imprēndere : Latin in-, in; see en-1 + Latin prehendere, prēndere, to take, grasp; see ghend- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French emprise, emprinse, from Late Latin *imprensa, from Latin in- + prehendere ("to take"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • A close relative is the English word "emprise" ( "an adventurous, daring, or chivalric enterprise"), which, like "impresario," traces back to the Latin verb

    Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day

  • They are men of honor, bold in emprise, valiant and fierce as hawks, but well-spoken, gentlemen first and last.

    INTERVIEW: John C. Wright

  • Mr. President and Gentlemen of the Empire Club, -- The linking of Great Britain and America, in a high emprise is always welcome to a British or an American audience.

    Great Britain and America in the Service of the World

  • "O my king," the Lady Om whined to me in her beggar's chant; and I knew all her long-tried love and faith in my emprise were in that chant.

    Chapter 15

  • Also, Graham realized that the turning of her head and the waving of her arm was only partly in bravado, was more in aesthetic wisdom of the picture she composed, and was, most of all, sheer joy of daring and emprise of the blood and the flesh and the life that was she.

    CHAPTER IX

  • Is it necessary to ask how much of high emprise and honorable conduct has been found here?

    DARKWATER

  • And first, the wise men and the magicians recommend that ye be all three sent forth upon an arduous emprise.

    PodCastle » PodCastle 89: The Queen’s Triplets

  • Thou too, O Pylades, trusty squire, whose training shows thy father's sterling worth, receive a garland from my hand, for thou no less than he hast a share in this emprise; and so I pray, good luck be thine for ever!

    Electra

  • Has she imposed upon you the labors of some high emprise, such as paladins sought voluntarily in the olden time?

    Modeste Mignon

  • But if so, we must set out with minds prepared, since today either a glorious death awaits us or the achievement of a deed of noblest emprise in the rescue of so many

    Anabasis

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  • (n.): enterprise, adventure; prowess or daring. Also emprize.

    September 25, 2009