Definitions for attainəˈteɪn

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word attain

Random House Webster's College Dictionary


  1. to reach, achieve, or accomplish; gain; obtain:

    to attain one's goals.

  2. to come to or arrive at:

    to attain the mountain peak.

  3. (v.i.)to succeed in reaching something:

    to attain to knowledge.

  4. to reach in the course of development or growth:

    These trees attain to remarkable height.

* Syn: See gain1.

Origin of attain:

1300–50; ME atei(g)nen < AF, OF ateign-, s. of ateindre < VL *attangere (for L attingere) = L at-at-+tangere to touch


Princeton's WordNet

  1. achieve, accomplish, attain, reach(verb)

    to gain with effort

    "she achieved her goal despite setbacks"

  2. reach, hit, attain(verb)

    reach a point in time, or a certain state or level

    "The thermometer hit 100 degrees"; "This car can reach a speed of 140 miles per hour"

  3. fall upon, strike, come upon, light upon, chance upon, come across, chance on, happen upon, attain, discover(verb)

    find unexpectedly

    "the archeologists chanced upon an old tomb"; "she struck a goldmine"; "The hikers finally struck the main path to the lake"

  4. reach, make, attain, hit, arrive at, gain(verb)

    reach a destination, either real or abstract

    "We hit Detroit by noon"; "The water reached the doorstep"; "We barely made it to the finish line"; "I have to hit the MAC machine before the weekend starts"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. attain(verb)əˈteɪn

    to achieve

    to attain results; an attainable goal; attainment of our aims


  1. attain(Verb)

    To accomplish; to achieve.

    To attain such a high level of proficiency requires hours of practice each day.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Attain(verb)

    to achieve or accomplish, that is, to reach by efforts; to gain; to compass; as, to attain rest

  2. Attain(verb)

    to gain or obtain possession of; to acquire

  3. Attain(verb)

    to get at the knowledge of; to ascertain

  4. Attain(verb)

    to reach or come to, by progression or motion; to arrive at

  5. Attain(verb)

    to overtake

  6. Attain(verb)

    to reach in excellence or degree; to equal

  7. Attain(verb)

    to come or arrive, by motion, growth, bodily exertion, or efforts toward a place, object, state, etc.; to reach

  8. Attain(verb)

    to come or arrive, by an effort of mind

  9. Attain(noun)


British National Corpus

  1. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'attain' in Verbs Frequency: #971

Translations for attain

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


to gain; to achieve

He attained all his ambitions.

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