Definition of ambition in English:

ambition

noun

  • 1A strong desire to do or to achieve something, typically requiring determination and hard work.

    ‘her ambition was to become a pilot’
    ‘he achieved his ambition of making a fortune’
    • ‘If anything, Allan and his management team have had to rein in their ambitions.’
    • ‘The desire for weed-free fields is not an evil ambition.’
    • ‘He and Graham Gordon, another young Scot soon to join the paid ranks, have big ambitions.’
    • ‘Land-hungry settlers viewed the royal government as an obstacle to their ambitions.’
    • ‘The storytelling ambitions of the two paintings are entirely interchangeable.’
    • ‘Andrews just hopes their ambitions tally with his own and those of his boss.’
    • ‘The single abiding ambition of my life was to be as good a father as I could.’
    • ‘Her ambition was to work in the field of astrophysics.’
    • ‘Constable died in 1837 feeling that his ambitions had not been realized.’
    • ‘For a man whose ambition had always been to farm, he has no regrets about his change of career.’
    • ‘Noble ideas about feeding the world are being used to cloak ambitions of economic dominance.’
    • ‘Not so long ago he was watching telly with his eldest daughter, Lois, who has ambitions to be an actor.’
    • ‘The firm harbours ambitions to build a major annual event around St Andrew's Day.’
    • ‘Hughes won the affection of many viewers in the original programme when he set out his ambitions in life.’
    • ‘If we work together we can realise these ambitions - we can make Scotland a better place.’
    • ‘All of this occurs amid speculation about her own presidential ambitions.’
    • ‘His ambition of becoming Prime Minister was dashed forever.’
    • ‘By the age of 14 she had two ambitions: to join the army and to compete in the Olympics.’
    • ‘Matt left his native Birmingham a year ago to pursue his ambition of being part of a band.’
    • ‘Now, if I get some MP to sign a letter, it feels like I've achieved my life's ambition.’
    aspiration, intention, goal, aim, objective, object, purpose, intent, plan, scheme, mission, calling, vocation, desire, wish, design, target, end, dream, hope
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Desire and determination to achieve success.
      ‘life offered few opportunities for young people with ambition’
      • ‘During the course of Citizen Kane, the hero marries two women and his ambition drives them away.’
      • ‘He's been good at everything he's turned his hand to because of his determination and ambition.’
      • ‘Most dangerous of all is that this will encourage those whose ambition outstrips their ability.’
      • ‘Publicly affable, his home life seems to have taken the brunt of his drive and ambition.’
      • ‘Goneril and Regan, consumed by ambition, divide the kingdom in half.’
      • ‘On the other hand, it would be surprising if they had equal levels of ambition.’
      • ‘Julie's success is based on driving ambition, a deprived childhood and hard graft.’
      • ‘He now has a job, home and family and has developed into a responsible, caring father with ambition.’
      • ‘The boy was a considerable scholar - fluent, we are told, in six languages - but also consumed with ambition.’
      • ‘In a book of such ambition, there will be much with which to quibble.’
      • ‘She arrived in 1920s Paris with nothing but talent, ruthless ambition and her own inimitable style.’
      • ‘So is it personal ambition that's driven her to scale the upper heights of the ministry?’
      • ‘Unlike world leaders she was not driven by raging ambition or a desire to improve society.’
      • ‘In nineteenth-century France, artists of high ambition sometimes expressed impatience with easel painting.’
      • ‘After a sickly childhood, he entered manhood with uncommon zest and ambition.’
      • ‘The present trustees could never be accused of lacking ambition.’
      • ‘It has less independence than the body it replaced but more ambition and more resources.’
      • ‘This dedication came not through ambition, or from a search for glory, but through his real generosity of spirit, through love.’
      • ‘His energy and ambition are astonishing, yet he emerges from this exhibit as a secondary, if engaging, figure.’
      • ‘The result of years of research, the book portrays the regent as a woman of ambition, taste, and faith.’
      drive, determination, desire, enterprise, initiative, eagerness, motivation, enthusiasm, zeal, commitment, a sense of purpose, longing, yearning, hankering
      View synonyms

Origin

Middle English: via Old French from Latin ambitio(n-), from ambire ‘go around (canvassing for votes)’.

Pronunciation

ambition

/amˈbiSH(ə)n//æmˈbɪʃ(ə)n/