1. [syn: striving, nisus, pains, strain]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Nisus \Ni"sus\, n. [L., fr. niti, p. p. nisus, to strive.]
1. A striving; an effort; a conatus.
A nisus or energizing towards a presented object.
(a) The periodic procreative desire manifested in the
spring by birds, etc.
(b) The contraction of the diaphragm and abdominal muscles
to evacuate feces or urine.
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: an effortful attempt to attain a goal [syn: striving,
nisus, pains, strain]