Attempt

At*tempt"

(?; 215)verb transitive [imperfect & participle past Attempted; participle present & verbal noun Attempting.]

Etymology

Old French atenter, also spelt atempter, French attenter, from Low attentare to attempt; ad + tentare, temptare, to touch, try, verb intensive of tendere to stretch. See Tempt, and cf. Attend.
  • To make trial or experiment of; to try; to endeavor to do or perform (some action); to assay; as, to attempt to sing; to attempt a bold flight.
    Something attempted, something done, Has earned a night's repose.
    — Longfellow.
  • [Obsolete or Archaic] To try to move, by entreaty, by afflictions, or by temptations; to tempt.
    It made the laughter of an afternoon That Vivien should attempt the blameless king.
    — Thackeray.
  • To try to win, subdue, or overcome; as, one who attempts the virtue of a woman.
    Dear sir, of force I must attempt you further: Take some remembrance of us, as a tribute.
    — Shakespeare
  • To attack; to make an effort or attack upon; to try to take by force; as, to attempt the enemy's camp.
    Without attempting his adversary's life.
    — Motley.
    Synonyms — See Try.

At*tempt"

verb intransitive
  • [Obsolete] To make an attempt; — with upon. Sir T. Browne.

At*tempt"

noun
  • A essay, trial, or endeavor; an undertaking; an attack, or an effort to gain a point; especially an unsuccessful, as contrasted with a successful, effort.
    By his blindness maimed for high attempts.
    — Milton.
    These words agree in the idea of calling forth our powers into action. Trial is the generic term; it denotes a putting forth of one's powers with a view to determine what they can accomplish; as, to make trial of one's strength. An attempt is always directed to some definite and specific object; as, “The attempt, and not the deed, confounds us.” Shakespeare
    An endeavor is a continued attempt; as, “His high endeavor and his glad success.” Cowper.
    Effort is a specific putting forth of strength in order to carry out an attempt. Exertion is the putting forth or active exercise of any faculty or power. “It admits of all degrees of effort and even natural action without effort.” Centigrade J. Smith.
    See Try.
  • Attempt to commit a crime
    (Law) such an intentional preparatory act as will apparently result, if not extrinsically hindered, in a crime which it was designed to effect.
    Wharton.