c. 1200, "quarrel, contend," from Old French estriver "to quarrel, dispute, resist, struggle, put up a fight, compete," from estrif, estrit "quarrel" (see strife). It became a strong verb (past tense strove) by rhyming association with drive, dive, etc. Meaning "try hard" is from early 14c. Related: Striving.
updated on December 11, 2013