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undertake Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. verb enter upon an activity or enterprise
    set about; attempt.
  2. verb accept as a challenge
    tackle; take on.
    • I'll tackle this difficult task
  3. verb promise to do or accomplish
    • guarantee to free the prisoners
  4. verb enter into a contractual arrangement
  5. verb accept as a charge
    take in charge.

Un`der*take" transitive verb
Under + take.
imperfect Undertook ; past participle Undertaken ; present participle & verbal noun Undertaking
  1. To take upon one's self; to engage in; to enter upon; to take in hand; to begin to perform; to set about; to attempt.
    To second, or oppose, or undertake The perilous attempt. Milton.
  2. Specifically, to take upon one's self solemnly or expressly; to lay one's self under obligation, or to enter into stipulations, to perform or to execute; to covenant; to contract.
    I 'll undertake to land them on our coast. Shak.
  3. Hence, to guarantee; to promise; to affirm.
    And he was not right fat, I undertake. Dryden.
    And those two counties I will undertake Your grace shall well and quietly enjoiy. Shak.
    I dare undertake they will not lose their labor. Woodward.
  4. To assume, as a character. Obs. Shak.
  5. To engage with; to attack. Obs.
    It is not fit your lordship should undertake every companion that you give offense to. Shak.
  6. To have knowledge of; to hear. Obs. Spenser.
  7. To take or have the charge of. Obs. "Who undertakes you to your end." Shak.
    Keep well those that ye undertake. Chaucer.
Un`der*take" intransitive verb
  1. To take upon one's self, or assume, any business, duty, or province.
    O Lord, I am oppressed; undertake for me. Isa. xxxviii. 14.
  2. To venture; to hazard. Obs.
    It is the cowish terror of his spirit That dare not undertake. Shak.
  3. To give a promise or guarantee; to be surety.
    But on mine honor dare I undertake For good lord Titus' innocence in all. Shak.

Webster 1913

"Rowling never met an adverb she didn't like."

-Stephen King on J.K Rowling's excessive use of adverbs.

Fear not the Adverb Hell!

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