cajole

verb
ca·​jole | \ kə-ˈjōl How to pronounce cajole (audio) \
cajoled; cajoling

Definition of cajole

transitive verb

1a : to persuade with flattery or gentle urging especially in the face of reluctance : coax had to cajole them into going
b : to obtain from someone by gentle persuasion cajoled money from his parents
2 : to deceive with soothing words or false promises cajoled himself with thoughts of escape— Robertson Davies

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Other Words from cajole

cajolement \ kə-​ˈjōl-​mənt How to pronounce cajolement (audio) \ noun
cajoler noun
cajolery \ kə-​ˈjō-​lə-​rē How to pronounce cajolery (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for cajole

cajole, coax, soft-soap, blandish, wheedle mean to influence or persuade by pleasing words or actions. cajole suggests the deliberate use of flattery to persuade in the face of reluctance or reasonable objections. cajoled him into cheating on the final exam coax implies gentle and persistent words or actions employed to produce a desired effect. coaxed the cat out of the tree soft-soap refers to using smooth and somewhat insincere talk usually for personal gain. politicians soft-soaping eligible voters blandish implies a more open desire to win a person over by effusive praise and affectionate actions. legislators blandished with promises of support wheedle suggests more strongly than cajole the use of seductive appeal or artful words in persuading. hucksters wheedling her life's savings out of her

Did You Know?

Cajole comes from a French verb, cajoler, which is all about cajoling, coaxing, and chattering. You might not think to associate "cajole" with "cage," but some etymologists theorize that "cajoler" is connected to not one but two words for "cage." One of them is the Anglo-French cage, from which we borrowed our own word cage. It comes from Latin cavea, meaning "cage." The other is the Anglo-French word for "birdcage," which is "gaiole." It's an ancestor of our word jail, and it derives from Late Latin caveola, which means "little cage." Anglo-French speakers had a related verb, "gaioler," which meant "to chatter like a jay in a cage." It's possible that "cajoler" is a combination of "gaioler" and "cage."

Examples of cajole in a Sentence

cajoled her into doing his laundry for him

Recent Examples on the Web

His grandmother tried spanking him, then cajoling him with toys. Fatima Faizi, New York Times, "‘It’s Like a Nightmare’: For Bombing Survivors, Anguish That Won’t Stop," 6 Aug. 2019 Swift and Smith left the man alone after unsuccessfully trying to cajole him into a ride to a place to chill out, away from the concerned -- and sometimes fearful -- public eye. oregonlive, "Portland aims to dispatch better first responders for homelessness calls," 14 Sep. 2019 Tapping into headlines, Everytown and its affiliates cajoled the contenders to shift schedules to attend a day-long forum on gun violence in Des Moines, Iowa. Philip Elliott, Time, "Gun Safety Measures Have Momentum Right Now. That May Change Before Congress Comes Back," 12 Aug. 2019 Alternatively, Mr Johnson might be able to cajole the EU into a better deal. The Economist, "Prime Minister Boris Johnson fulfils his dream," 23 July 2019 In recent months, Russia has sent emissaries to cajole the tribe members back to Assad’s fold. Nabih Bulos, latimes.com, "Whether the U.S. fails or succeeds in Syria, tough choices lie ahead," 1 July 2019 On West Elm’s Facebook, customers cajole, plead, and complain about their faulty items, missing orders, or rude customer service experiences. Angela Lashbrook, Vox, "West Elm won over millennials. But now it’s really pissing them off.," 12 Oct. 2018 Sensing disaster, Norgay and Hillary raced up the mountain to cajole the tired men into action. Freddie Wilkinson, National Geographic, "He’s the last surviving member of the first expedition to summit Everest," 17 June 2019 Digital advertisers have long used AI to track prospective customers across the web, cajoling them into clicks and purchases. Alejandro De La Garza, Time, "This AI Software Is 'Coaching' Customer Service Workers. Soon It Could Be Bossing You Around, Too," 8 July 2019

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

1630, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for cajole

French cajoler

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Dictionary Entries near cajole

cajeput

cajeputene

caji

cajole

cajolingly

cajón

Cajon Pass

Statistics for cajole

Last Updated

14 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for cajole

The first known use of cajole was in 1630

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More Definitions for cajole

cajole

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cajole

: to persuade someone to do something or to give you something by making promises or saying nice things

cajole

verb
ca·​jole | \ kə-ˈjōl How to pronounce cajole (audio) \
cajoled; cajoling

Kids Definition of cajole

: to coax or persuade especially by flattery or false promises She cajoled me into accompanying her.

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More from Merriam-Webster on cajole

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cajole

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cajole

Spanish Central: Translation of cajole

Nglish: Translation of cajole for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cajole for Arabic Speakers

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