assuage

verb
as·​suage | \ ə-ˈswāj How to pronounce assuage (audio) also -ˈswāzh or -ˈswäzh\
assuaged; assuaging

Definition of assuage

transitive verb

1 : to lessen the intensity of (something that pains or distresses) : ease unable to assuage their grief
2 : pacify, quiet … vainly strove … to assuage an implacable foe …— Edward Gibbon
3 : to put an end to by satisfying : appease, quench assuaging his thirst

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Other Words from assuage

assuagement \ ə-​ˈswāj-​mənt How to pronounce assuagement (audio) also  -​ˈswāzh-​ or  -​ˈswäzh-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for assuage

Synonyms

allay, alleviate, ease, help, mitigate, mollify, palliate, relieve, soothe

Antonyms

aggravate, exacerbate

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Choose the Right Synonym for assuage

relieve, alleviate, lighten, assuage, mitigate, allay mean to make something less grievous. relieve implies a lifting of enough of a burden to make it tolerable. took an aspirin to relieve the pain alleviate implies temporary or partial lessening of pain or distress. the lotion alleviated the itching lighten implies reducing a burdensome or depressing weight. good news would lighten our worries assuage implies softening or sweetening what is harsh or disagreeable. ocean breezes assuaged the intense heat mitigate suggests a moderating or countering of the effect of something violent or painful. the need to mitigate barbaric laws allay implies an effective calming or soothing of fears or alarms. allayed their fears

Assuage Stays Sweet Over Time

Scholars assume that the word assuage derives from assuaviare, a Vulgar Latin term that combines the prefix ad- (to or toward) and the Latin suavis, meaning "sweet," pleasant, or agreeable. (Suavis is also the source of the adjective suave.) To assuage is to sweeten or make agreeable or tolerable, and it is far from the only English word for relieving or softening something difficult. Others include allay, alleviate, and mitigate. Allay implies an effective calming or soothing of fears or alarms, while alleviate implies a temporary or partial lessening of pain or distress. Mitigate suggests moderating or countering the force or intensity of something painful.

Examples of assuage in a Sentence

Life contains sorrows that cannot be assuaged, and it is important to be honest in acknowledging this. — Jo McGowan, Commonweal, 5 May 2006 But for the second exam, my pretest diet included yogurt and ice cream (without pieces), which assuaged my hunger, and the cleansing was stimulated by a glass of salty liquid midafternoon. — Jane E. Brody, New York Times, 12 July 2005 Whatever arrangements such mothers willingly make for their children, whatever strategies they employ to relieve their guilt, whatever books they read to assuage their anxiety—all of that is their business, not mine. — Caitlin Flanagan, Atlantic, March 2004 As I've told Jody on numerous occasions, the best way for her to assuage my guilt is to hit it big in the Internet gold rush and then retire … — Matthew Miller, New Republic, 17 Jan. 2000 He couldn't assuage his guilt over the divorce. a mother cooing to her toddler and assuaging his fear of the dark
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Recent Examples on the Web

Their desires were terrifying, all the more so because of the difficulty of figuring out what drove them and how they could be assuaged. Jonathan Dee, The New Yorker, "Why Lafcadio Hearn’s Ghost Stories Still Haunt Us," 9 Sep. 2019 But some of those fears were assuaged on Saturday, when officials said that the river was predicted to crest at 17.1 feet by Monday — about two feet lower than earlier estimates. Richard Fausset, New York Times, "Hurricane Barry Spares New Orleans (So Far), as Inland Cities Brace for Floods," 13 July 2019 Meanwhile, Jason points out errors made by John, his put-upon styling assistant, who assuages his hurt feelings with lemon drops and Xanax. Troy Patterson, The New Yorker, "Why “Styling Hollywood” Is One of the Best Celebrity-Stylist Reality Shows," 30 Aug. 2019 If Dorsey had similar concerns, Mayfield assuaged them during their first meeting. Sean Gregory/cleveland, Time, "“It's Time.” The Cleveland Browns Are Ready to Start Winning," 22 Aug. 2019 That level of collaboration between a diverse group of informed soccer minds—to design and execute a strategy to assuage the gender discrimination our reigning world champion women are facing—is absent within the federation. Grant Wahl, SI.com, "How U.S. Soccer's Other Presidential Candidates Would Handle Equal Pay Fight," 22 Aug. 2019 That detail will do little to assuage the negative speculation the company’s stock has endured over the past few weeks. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "Jumia is battling with internal fraud and external legal threats even as its losses widen," 21 Aug. 2019 Mr Rosselló might also have found ways to assuage voters who grumbled that his government presided over nepotism and corruption. A.r. | Chicago, The Economist, "The resignation of Ricardo Rosselló," 25 July 2019 WASHINGTON - White House officials and congressional leaders defended a controversial budget deal Tuesday, hoping to assuage concerns from conservatives and liberals ahead of a crucial House vote this week. Anchorage Daily News, "White House, congressional leaders work to sell two-year budget deal," 24 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'assuage.' 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 assuage

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for assuage

Middle English aswagen, from Anglo-French asuager, from Vulgar Latin *assuaviare, from Latin ad- + suavis sweet — more at sweet

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Statistics for assuage

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for assuage

The first known use of assuage was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for assuage

assuage

verb

English Language Learners Definition of assuage

formal : to make (something, such as an unpleasant feeling) less painful, severe, etc.

assuage

verb
as·​suage | \ ə-ˈswāj How to pronounce assuage (audio) \
assuaged; assuaging

Kids Definition of assuage

: to make less severe or intense assuage pain assuaged her grief

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More from Merriam-Webster on assuage

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with assuage

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for assuage

Spanish Central: Translation of assuage

Nglish: Translation of assuage for Spanish Speakers

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