ac·qui·esce | \ ˌa-kwē-ˈes \
acquiesced; acquiescing

Definition of acquiesce 

intransitive verb

: to accept, comply, or submit tacitly or passively often used with in or to

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Synonyms & Antonyms for acquiesce


accede, agree, assent, come round, consent, subscribe



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Choose the Right Synonym for acquiesce

assent, consent, accede, acquiesce, agree, subscribe mean to concur with what has been proposed. assent implies an act involving the understanding or judgment and applies to propositions or opinions. voters assented to the proposal consent involves the will or feelings and indicates compliance with what is requested or desired. consented to their daughter's going accede implies a yielding, often under pressure, of assent or consent. officials acceded to the prisoners' demands acquiesce implies tacit acceptance or forbearance of opposition. acquiesced to his boss's wishes agree sometimes implies previous difference of opinion or attempts at persuasion. finally agreed to come along subscribe implies not only consent or assent but hearty approval and active support. subscribes wholeheartedly to the idea

Did You Know?

Acquiesce means essentially "to comply quietly," so it should not surprise you to learn that it is ultimately derived from the Latin verb quiescere, meaning "to be quiet." It arrived in English around 1620, via the French acquiescer, with the now obsolete sense "to rest satisfied." The earliest known recorded use of the word acquiesce in the sense of "to agree or comply" appeared in the writings of the English philosopher Thomas Hobbes in 1651. In his masterpiece Leviathan, Hobbes argued that people must subject themselves completely to a sovereign and should obey the teachings of the church. Encouraging his readers to adopt his position he wrote, "Our Beleefe . . . is in the Church; whose word we take, and acquiesce therein."

Examples of acquiesce in a Sentence

… the tender understanding with which he had acquiesced to her wish not to consummate their relationship out of wedlock. —Dorothy West, The Wedding, 1995 … he seems to have acquiesced in his Christian Scientist wife's refusal to provide medical care … —Joyce Carol Oates, New York Times Book Review, 17 Dec. 1995 The main body of Shi'is, in and around Iraq, accepted 'Abbasid rule, or at least acquiesced in it. —Albert Hourani, A History of the Arab Peoples, 1991 He passively acquired the reputation of being a snob, and acquiesced to it … —George V. Higgins, Harper's, September 1984 They demanded it, and he acquiesced. apparently the contractor expected me to acquiesce to my own fleecing
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Recent Examples on the Web

In later years, Chinese officials and the China Harbor company went to great lengths to keep relations strong with Mr. Rajapaksa, who for years had faithfully acquiesced to such terms. Maria Abi-habib, New York Times, "How China Got Sri Lanka to Cough Up a Port," 25 June 2018 Bartleby fails to acquiesce in carrying out his humdrum, tedious tasks. The Economist, "Introducing Bartleby, our new column on management and work," 26 May 2018 The party, particularly those in it who have acquiesced to Xi’s power play, viewed a powerful figure as necessary to overcome mounting public dissatisfaction, especially with corruption that accumulated during Hu Jintao’s 10-year reign. Erica Frantz, Washington Post, "Did Xi Jinping just become China’s strongman? Not quite.," 13 Mar. 2018 Thurman, seeking possible legal recourse, was later stymied by Tarantino and Miramax, who refused to give her the behind the scenes footage of the crash, though Tarantino since acquiesced, and the footage appears in the Times article. Vogue, "How Much Did Quentin Tarantino Know About Harvey Weinstein's Alleged Abuse of Uma Thurman?," 6 Feb. 2018 And the patient, struck by the urgency expressed, will acquiesce and schedule the tests without checking prices. WSJ, "Price Opacity Limits Optimal Use of HSAs," 27 June 2018 Teigen, 32, wrote alongside a silly photo of herself trying to acquiesce to her daughter’s demand. Maria Pasquini,, "Chrissy Teigen Breastfeeds Her Son Miles and Daughter Luna’s Doll: 'I Guess I Have Twins Now'," 7 July 2018 So far, none of the companies have acquiesced to their employees’ demands. Douglas Macmillan, WSJ, "Google Reins In Workplace Debate," 28 June 2018 Not on sidewalks, trails As city officials acquiesce to electric scooters, Adamson said the council's short-term action will still limit where they can be ridden. James Briggs, Indianapolis Star, "Now that electric scooters are all over Indianapolis, they're not going away," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acquiesce.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of acquiesce

1613, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for acquiesce

borrowed from French acquiescer, going back to Middle French, borrowed from Latin acquiēscere "to rest, find peace, be satisfied (with)," from ad- ad- + quiēscere "to repose, be quiet" — more at quiescent

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Last Updated

23 Aug 2018

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The first known use of acquiesce was in 1613

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More Definitions for acquiesce



English Language Learners Definition of acquiesce

: to accept, agree, or allow something to happen by staying silent or by not arguing


ac·qui·esce | \ ˌa-kwē-ˈes \
acquiesced; acquiescing

Kids Definition of acquiesce

: to accept, agree, or give consent by keeping silent or by not making objections They acquiesced to the demands.


intransitive verb
ac·qui·esce | \ ˌa-kwē-ˈes \
acquiesced; acquiescing

Legal Definition of acquiesce 

: to accept, comply, or submit tacitly or passively often used with in and sometimes with to

Other words from acquiesce

acquiescence \ˌa-kwē-ˈes-ᵊns \ noun

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Comments on acquiesce

What made you want to look up acquiesce? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


alleviating pain or harshness

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