D: Verb (used with object): 1. to put forth or into use, as power; exercise, as ability or influence; put into vigorous action. 2. to put (oneself) into strenuous, vigorous action or effort. Related words: expend, wield, utilize, apply, exercise, strive, plug, use, dig, toil, work, ply, labor, employ, strain, struggle, push, endeavor, throw. Origin: 1650–60; < Latin ex(s)ertus, past participle of exserere to thrust out, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + ser(ere) to bind together + -tus past participle suffix. British Dictionary: 1. verb (tr) to use (influence, authority, etc) forcefully or effectively. 2. to apply (oneself) diligently; make a strenuous effort. Word origin: C17 (in the sense: push forth, emit): from Latin exserere to thrust out, from ex- 1 + serere to bind together, entwine. MW: transitive verb: 1a. to put forth (strength, effort, etc.). 1b. to put (oneself) into action or to tiring effort. 2. to bring to bear especially with sustained effort or lasting effect. 3. employ, wield. Synonyms: apply, exercise, ply, put out, wield. First Known Use of exert: circa 1630, in the meaning defined at sense 1aHistory and Etymology for exert: Latin exsertus, past participle of exserere to thrust out, from ex- + serere to join — more at series. English Language Learners Definitions: 1. to use (strength, ability, etc.). 2. to cause (force, effort, etc.) to have an effect or to be felt. 3. exert yourself, to make an effort to do something. Kid's Definitions: 1. to put forth (as strength) : bring into use. 2. to make an effort.