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

  • n. Persistent application or diligence; unflagging effort.
  • n. Constant personal attention and often obsequious solicitude. Often used in the plural.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Great and persistent toil or effort.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Constant or close application or attention, particularly to some business or enterprise; diligence.
  • n. Studied and persevering attention to a person; -- usually in the plural.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Constant or close application to any business or occupation; diligence.
  • n. Solicitous care of a person or persons; constant personal attention: usually in the plural.
  • n. Hence Sycophantic attention; servility.
  • n. Synonyms Industry, Assiduity, Application, Diligence, Constancy, Perseverance, Persistence, care, attention, watchfulness, sedulousness, patience. Diligence in labor often conveys the idea of quickness. Industry keeps at work, leaving no time idle. Assiduity (literally, a sitting down to work) sticks quietly to a particular task, with the determination to succeed in spite of its difficulty, or to get it done in spite of its length. Application, literally, bends itself to its work, and is, more specifically than assiduity, a steady concentration of one's powers of body and mind: as, he was a man of extraordinary powers of application; Newton attributed all his own success to application. Diligence is, literally, fondness for one's work, and so, by a natural transfer, industry that is alert. Constancy is the power to continue unchanged, as in affection, or to hold on in any particular course or work: it goes more deeply into character than the others. Perseverance suggests obstacles from without or within which are steadily met, and is morally neutral. Persistence may be good, but it is more often an evil perseverance, as obstinacy or a determination to carry one's point against unwillingness or refusal on the part of others. We speak of plodding industry, patient assiduity, steady application, great diligence, unshaken constancy, undaunted perseverance, persistence that will not take No for an answer.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. great and constant diligence and attention


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The motive of this assiduity was at length revealed to me, by a violent and fervent declaration of love, which astonished and perplexed me.

    Memoirs of Mary Robinson

  • Or maybe a nap first, since I honestly have no clue if I used "assiduity" properly above, a sure sign that I'm tired.....

    how not to be a writer

  • Their battalions practised skirmishing on the glacis with that routine assiduity which is the secret of the German military success.

    Camps, Quarters, and Casual Places

  • They had been filling the plates and glasses of these two ladies all the way from Calcutta; they had walked with them every day on deck, had fetched their chairs, picked up their handkerchiefs, and looked after their bottled beer at tiffin-time with an assiduity which is more than commendable in such warm latitudes.

    The Bertrams

  • In all respects unlike himself, she suffered intensely; and, though hoary with sixty winters, hovered about him, with that busy assiduity which is one of the simplest forms in which anxiety and grief are apt to show themselves.

    Swallow Barn, or A Sojourn in the Old Dominion. In Two Volumes. Vol. II.

  • The fact that Britain at last opened her eyes to the opportunity afforded to the Allies to rally this powerful people to their side was attributable to the initiative, the assiduity and the fervour of one of the greatest Hebrews of all time: Dr. Chaim Weizmann …

    Matthew Yglesias » Israel Politics Circa 1947

  • But in reality he seems to have had a fairly shrewd sense of the potential scale and scope of this enterprise and to have laid the foundations of widespread recruitment with some assiduity.

    'The Crusades'

  • I shall from this day take the firm resolution to study with renewed assiduity, to keep my attention always well fixed on whatever I am about, and to strive to become every day less trifling and more fit for what, if Heaven wills it, I'm some day to be.

    Archive 2008-01-01

  • He had a better seat on a horse than Dara, he knew almost all of the Quran by heart, and he cultivated the nobles at court with an assiduity Dara should have employed but did not.

    Shadow Princess

  • Given the assiduity with which the ill-bred and deranged pursue it, I say it ought to be.

    Meghan McCain: "Sarah Palin is the only part of the campaign that I won’t comment on publicly."


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  • It took me three tries to type this right. I keep typing 'assiduIDity' instead of 'assiDUity.' Can't we just say "assiduousness"?

    "'...I had told you all about Adanson before, and at great length—his assiduity, his countless books, his misfortune. I beg your pardon. There is nothing more profoundly boring, more deeply saddening, than a repeated tale.'"

    --P. O'Brian, The Commodore, 213

    March 18, 2008