Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French parfurmer, alteration of perforner, parfurnir, from par-, per- thoroughly (from Latin per-) + furnir to complete — more at furnish
Date: 14th century
1. to adhere to the terms of ; fulfill <perform a contract> 2. carry out, do 3. a. to do in a formal manner or according to prescribed ritual b. to give a rendition of ; present intransitive verb 1. to carry out an action or pattern of behavior ; act, function 2. to give a performance ; play • performability noun • performable adjective • performer noun Synonyms: perform, execute, discharge, accomplish, achieve, effect, fulfill mean to carry out or into effect. perform implies action that follows established patterns or procedures or fulfills agreed-upon requirements and often connotes special skill <performed gymnastics>. execute stresses the carrying out of what exists in plan or in intent <executed the hit-and-run>. discharge implies execution and completion of appointed duties or tasks <discharged his duties>. accomplish stresses the successful completion of a process rather than the means of carrying it out <accomplished everything they set out to do>. achieve adds to accomplish the implication of conquered difficulties <achieve greatness>. effect adds to achieve an emphasis on the inherent force in the agent capable of surmounting obstacles <effected sweeping reforms>. fulfill implies a complete realization of ends or possibilities <fulfilled their ambitions>.
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.