Someone who is diligent works hard and carefully. If you want to write the epic history of your family, you’ll have to be very diligent in tracking down and interviewing all of your relatives.

Diligent comes from the Latin diligere, which means “to value highly, take delight in,” but in English it has always meant careful and hard-working. If you’re a diligent worker, you don’t just bang away at your job; you earnestly try to do everything right. Although being lucky and talented doesn’t hurt, it’s the diligent person who eventually succeeds.

Definitions of diligent
  1. adjective

    quietly and steadily persevering especially in detail or exactness

    diligent (or patient) worker”


    enduring trying circumstances with even temper or characterized by such endurance
  2. adjective

    characterized by care and perseverance in carrying out tasks

    diligent detective investigates all clues”
    diligent search of the files”


    actively or fully engaged or occupied

    exercising caution or showing care or attention
    assiduous, sedulous

    marked by care and persistent effort
    hardworking, industrious, tireless, untiring

    characterized by hard work and perseverance
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    characterized by neglect and undue lack of concern

    showing a lack of attention or care

    marked by lack of attention or consideration or forethought or thoroughness; not careful
    delinquent, derelict, neglectful, remiss

    failing in what duty requires
    lax, slack

    lacking in rigor or strictness

    involving a driver of a motor vehicle who leaves the scene of an accident
    inattentive, neglectful

    not showing due care or attention
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