What Is the Definition of "careering"?


Quick Answer

"Careering" is a gerund that means to move along quickly or to go forward at full speed. The word is often confused with "careening," which means to sway or tip to one side.

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Full Answer

Grammarphobia notes that most people use the word "careen" when they should use "career" to describe a car going out of control quickly. As of 2014, dictionaries have begun adjusting the definitions to reflect the common usage of the two words as interchangeable. Many stylebooks, including the one for the New York Times, continue to make the distinction.

The word "career" originated in Latin and French words for a carriage or wheeled vehicle. The Free Dictionary notes that "career" as a noun can also mean "speed."

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