Definition of prowess in English:


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  • 1Skill or expertise in a particular activity or field.

    ‘his prowess as a fisherman’
    • ‘And his fame has nothing whatsoever to do with his prowess on the football field or in the political arena.’
    • ‘Padraic will also be remembered for his prowess on the football field.’
    • ‘Fathers looked proudly upon children who showed prowess in these extracurricular activities.’
    • ‘You are applauded for your professional prowess and dexterity in a business venture.’
    • ‘For years now my culinary prowess has extended no further than sticking a chicken in the oven.’
    • ‘Let's hope that the remaining garden shows go all out to beat their predecessors in culinary skill if not theatrical prowess.’
    • ‘It is the academic prowess or skill that speaks, not the physical appearance of the beneficiary.’
    • ‘Ontario has crews that are second to none in terms of their skills and technological prowess.’
    • ‘Yet they have the ability, potential, talent and prowess to go for big scores.’
    • ‘When he returned, despite his academic prowess, his social ability was about 10 years behind.’
    • ‘Many music lovers seem to think that unlike her acting prowess, her singing talents needs to be honed.’
    • ‘The children at the end of the camp took part in a competition to show their prowess and several of them won prizes.’
    • ‘Her athletic prowess was demonstrated in the numerous track and field trophies she won.’
    • ‘The American scientist was to be prized not just for intellectual prowess, but technical facility.’
    • ‘He is agile in the field and also possesses accurate throwing prowess from the deep.’
    • ‘He added that irrespective of technical prowess, security consulting required more than just technical skills.’
    • ‘Yet for all her athletic prowess, Serena Williams is not content to remain just a tennis star.’
    • ‘He impressed judges with his business prowess and the commitment he has shown in fostering more than 60 children.’
    • ‘This album exposes him as an unremarkable singer, largely devoid of charisma or vocal prowess.’
    • ‘These factors, he claimed, were an indicator of the industrial prowess of a nation.’
    skill, skilfulness, expertise, effectiveness, mastery, facility, ability, capability, capacity, talent, genius, adroitness, adeptness, aptitude, dexterity, deftness, competence, competency, professionalism, excellence, accomplishment, experience, proficiency, expertness, finesse, know-how
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  • 2Bravery in battle.

    ‘the hereditary nobility had no monopoly of skill and prowess in war’
    • ‘Though Ilantar had little love for the Isaad and their sinister lord, he respected their prowess in battle.’
    • ‘Pompeii split up much of the land giving large chunks to his soldiers as a reward for their prowess in battle.’
    • ‘Zaren on the other hand was not a demigod, and Tsuko had not foreseen his great battle prowess.’
    • ‘Marion knew he felt inferior in every way, from prowess in battle to success with women.’
    • ‘He was a prodigious builder whose appetite for building was matched by his prowess in war.’
    • ‘Much that was read and sung celebrated prowess in war and the glorious deeds of ancestors.’
    • ‘Over the last 16 years I have time and again witnessed the undoubted courage and fighting prowess of the Afghans.’
    • ‘Confident in their military prowess, they preferred to try the arbitrament of war.’
    courage, bravery, gallantry, valour, heroism, intrepidness, intrepidity, nerve, pluck, pluckiness, doughtiness, hardihood, braveness, courageousness, dauntlessness, gameness, manfulness, boldness, daring, audacity, spirit, fearlessness
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/ˈprou(w)əs/ /ˈpraʊ(w)əs/


Middle English (in prowess (sense 2)): from Old French proesce, from prou ‘valiant’. Sense 1 dates from the early 20th century.