Word of the Day – Founder

Word of the Day : February 28, 2022


verb FOUN-der

What It Means

Founder means (of a boat or ship) “to become submerged” or “to sink.” Figuratively, it can mean “to experience failure or to be unsuccessful.”

// As the vessel began to founder, the captain ordered everyone on board to prepare to abandon ship.

// The entrepreneur recruited a financial advisor to help her business that was foundering.

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FOUNDER in Context

“Earlier, negotiations appeared to have foundered, with the clubs unable to reach an agreement on how to split Aubameyang’s wage and Barcelona’s financial difficulties making things extremely complicated.” —David Hytner et al., The Guardian, 31 Jan. 2022

Did You Know?

Founder is related to Latin fundus, meaning “bottom” or “base.” When something “founders,” it usually hits the bottom in one sense or another. When a ship founders, it sinks to the bottom of the sea, for example, and if your endeavor is foundering, it isn’t doing well and is therefore headed downward.