Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search



From Middle English pursuen, from Anglo-Norman pursure, poursuire etc., from Latin prōsequor (though influenced by persequor). Doublet of prosecute.



pursue (third-person singular simple present pursues, present participle pursuing, simple past and past participle pursued)

  1. (transitive, intransitive) To follow urgently, originally with intent to capture or harm; to chase. [from 14th c.]
    pursue one's dreams
    • 15 September 2009, Martin Chulov, “Iraqi shoe-thrower claims he suffered torture in jail”, in The Guardian:
      He now feared for his life, and believed US intelligence agents would pursue him.
  2. (transitive) To follow, travel down (a particular way, course of action etc.). [from late 14th c.]
    Her rival pursued a quite different course.
  3. (transitive) To aim for, go after (a specified objective, situation etc.). [from late 14th c.]
    • 1 December 2009, Benjamin Pogrund, “Freeze won't hurt Netanyahu”, in The Guardian:
      He even stands to gain in world terms: his noisy critics strengthen his projected image of a man determined to pursue peace with Palestinians.
  4. (transitive) To participate in (an activity, business etc.); to practise, follow (a profession). [from 15th c.]
    • 2001, David L. Lieber; Jules Harlow, Etz Hayim: Torah and Commentary, page 141:
      The Kedarites are depicted as herders of sheep and goats who pursued a seminomadic existence and lived scattered over a wide area of the desert region east of the land of Israel.
  5. (intransitive) To act as a legal prosecutor.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


See also[edit]