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English definition of “earnest”

earnest

adjective uk   /ˈɜː.nɪst/ us    /ˈɝː-/
serious or determined, especially too serious and unable to find your own actions funny: He was a very earnest young man.Lacking humour in deadly earnest completely serious: These fanatics are in deadly earnest when they say they want to destroy all forms of government.Strong-willedLacking humour in earnest When something begins in earnest, it has already started but is now being done in a serious and complete way: The election campaign has begun in earnest.Lacking humour be in earnest to be speaking honestly: I thought he was joking - I didn't realize he was in earnest.Honesty, openness and sincerity
earnestly
adverb uk   /-li/ us  
Lacking humour
earnestness
noun [U] uk   /ˈɜː.nɪst.nəs/ us    /ˈɝː-/
Lacking humourStrength of will and determination
(Definition of earnest from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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