Engaged means fully occupied or having your full attention. An engaged reader really focuses on the words and maybe even jots down questions or comments in the pages' margins.

If you're busy or involved with something, you're engaged in it. A formal reply to an invitation to lunch might be, "I'm sorry, I'm otherwise engaged" — meaning you already have plans. Engaged often describes people who have committed to getting married. You can see this meaning in the word's origin, the French word engagier, meaning "to pledge."

Definitions of engaged
  1. adjective
    having one's attention or mind or energy engaged
    “deeply engaged in conversation”
    synonyms: occupied
    actively or fully engaged or occupied
  2. adjective
    having services contracted for
    “the carpenter engaged (or employed) for the job is sick”
    having your services engaged for; or having a job especially one that pays wages or a salary
  3. adjective
    (of facilities such as telephones or lavatories) unavailable for use by anyone else or indicating unavailability; (`engaged' is a British term for a busy telephone line)
    “receptionists' telephones are always engaged
    synonyms: busy, in use
    held or filled or in use
  4. adjective
    (used of toothed parts or gears) interlocked and interacting
    “the gears are engaged
    synonyms: intermeshed, meshed
    equipped with or connected by gears or having gears engaged
  5. adjective
    reserved in advance
    synonyms: booked, set-aside
    set aside for the use of a particular person or party
  6. adjective
    involved in military hostilities
    “the desperately engaged ships continued the fight”
    connected by participation or association or use
  7. adjective
    built against or attached to a wall
    engaged columns”
    joined or linked together
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week