Attend vs Participate - What's the difference?

attend | participate |

In intransitive terms the difference between attend and participate

is that attend is (to turn one's consideration to, deal with) To turn one's consideration ({{term|to}}); to deal with (a task, problem, concern etc.), to look after while participate is to join in, to take part, to involve oneself ({{term|in}} something).

As verbs the difference between attend and participate

is that attend is alternative form of nodot=9 lang=en "to kindle" while participate is to join in, to take part, to involve oneself ({{term|in}} something).

As an adjective participate is

acting in common; participating.



Etymology 1

From (etyl) attenden, atenden, from (etyl) .


(en verb)
  • ("to kindle").
  • Etymology 2

    From (etyl) attenden, atenden, from (etyl) ; see tend and compare attempt.


    (en verb)
  • (archaic) To listen to (something or someone); to pay attention to; regard; heed.
  • * Sir (Philip Sidney) (1554-1586)
  • The diligent pilot in a dangerous tempest doth not attend the unskilful words of the passenger.
  • (archaic) To listen ((to), (unto)).
  • * , chapter=15
  • , title= The Mirror and the Lamp , passage=Edward Churchill still attended to his work in a hopeless mechanical manner like a sleep-walker who walks safely on a well-known round. But his Roman collar galled him, his cossack stifled him, his biretta was as uncomfortable as a merry-andrew's cap and bells.}}
  • To wait upon as a servant etc.; to accompany to assist (someone).
  • * (Edmund Spenser) (c.1552–1599)
  • The fifth had charge sick persons to attend .
  • * (William Shakespeare) (1564-1616)
  • Attends the emperor in his royal court.
  • * (1800-1859)
  • With a sore heart and a gloomy brow, he prepared to attend William thither.
  • (senseid)To be present at (an event or place) in order to take part in some action or proceedings.
  • *
  • , title=(The Celebrity), chapter=5 , passage=In the eyes of Mr. Farquhar Fenelon Cooke the apotheosis of the Celebrity was complete. The people of Asquith were not only willing to attend the house-warming, but had been worked up to the pitch of eagerness. The Celebrity as a matter of course was master of ceremonies.}}
  • * 1994 , (Nelson Mandela), (Long Walk to Freedom) , Abacus 2010, p. 20:
  • I attended a one-room school next door to the palace and studied English, Xhosa, history and geography.
  • To be present with; to accompany; to be united or consequent to.
  • * (John Dryden) (1631-1700)
  • What cares must then attend the toiling swain.
  • * {{quote-book, year=1922, author=(Ben Travers)
  • , chapter=5, title= A Cuckoo in the Nest , passage=The most rapid and most seductive transition in all human nature is that which attends the palliation of a ravenous appetite. There is something humiliating about it.
  • To wait for; to await; to remain, abide, or be in store for.
  • * (John Locke) (1632-1705)
  • the state that attends all men after this
  • * (John Dryden) (1631-1700)
  • Three days I promised to attend my doom.
    * (listen to) behear




  • To join in, to take part, to involve oneself ((in) something).
  • (obsolete) To share, share in (something).
  • * 1638 , , Some Yeares Travels , I:
  • they seldome feed together, lest they might participate one anothers impurity: each has his owne cup [...].
  • (obsolete) To share (something) (with) others; to transfer (something) (to) or (unto) others.
  • * 1662 , Thomas Salusbury, Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief Systems of the World , II:
  • Make the Earth [...] turn round its own axis in twenty four hours, and towards the same point with all the other Spheres; and without participating this same motion to any other Planet or Star.


  • (obsolete) Acting in common; participating.
  • * 1608 , , I. i. 101:
  • And, mutually participate , did minister / Unto the appetite and affection common / Of the whole body.