captivate

verb
cap·​ti·​vate | \ ˈkap-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce captivate (audio) \
captivated; captivating

Definition of captivate

transitive verb

1 archaic : seize, capture
2 : to influence and dominate by some special charm, art, or trait and with an irresistible appeal We were captivated by her beauty. The scenery captivated our attention.

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Other Words from captivate

captivation \ ˌkap-​tə-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce captivation (audio) \ noun
captivator \ ˈkap-​tə-​ˌvā-​tər How to pronounce captivator (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for captivate

Synonyms

allure, beguile, bewitch, charm, enchant, fascinate, kill, magnetize, wile, witch [archaic]

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Choose the Right Synonym for captivate

attract, allure, charm, captivate, fascinate, enchant mean to draw another by exerting a powerful influence. attract applies to any degree or kind of ability to exert influence over another. students attracted by the school's locale allure implies an enticing by what is fair, pleasing, or seductive. an alluring smile charm implies the power of casting a spell over the person or thing affected and so compelling a response charmed by their hospitality , but it may, like captivate, suggest no more than evoking delight or admiration. her performances captivated audiences fascinate suggests a magical influence and tends to stress the ineffectiveness of attempts to resist. a story that continues to fascinate children enchant is perhaps the strongest of these terms in stressing the appeal of the agent and the degree of delight evoked in the subject. hopelessly enchanted by her beauty

Examples of captivate in a Sentence

The play has been captivating audiences for years. the clown captivated the toddlers with his balloon tricks

Recent Examples on the Web

As the night went on, the sky cleared and allowed guests to step outside and admire the sweeping views of the glamorous city that always captivated Warhol. Leigh Penney, Vogue, "The Former Beverly Hills Hideaway of Elvis Presley Welcomed Frieze Los Angeles Guests at a Cocktail Party," 20 Feb. 2019 Instead, huge crowds are forming around the booth for Fortnite, the battle royale game that is still captivating the world over a year after release. Patricia Hernandez, The Verge, "People are swarming the first official Fortnite mini theme park," 22 Aug. 2018 Michelle was captivated by true crime stories, especially cold cases. CBS News, "Has "The Golden State Killer" been caught?," 28 Apr. 2018 But Shkliarov was captivated by Sanders and his commitment to universal health care. Nicole Grether, NBC News, "Ex-Bernie Sanders activist wants to make Russian politics more like Uber," 26 Apr. 2018 So chances are, no matter how captivating the sales pitch is, your results will likely be different. Abby Langer, SELF, "Most Diets Don't Work, But If a Diet Promises These 4 Things, Run Away," 5 Jan. 2019 The entire season lasted three weeks, and science Twitter was captivated throughout, following along with updates from #RisingStar. Lydia Pyne, Ars Technica, "Rising Star found a new species—now it wants to find a new way for paleoanthropology," 20 Dec. 2018 These Hallmark channels will continue to captivate our attention. Alessandra Codinha, Vogue, "Why Can't I Stop Watching Hallmark Christmas Movies?," 21 Dec. 2018 But at rallies in the past two weeks, Republican contenders appear to have figured out how to captivate the party’s leader less than 100 days before the midterm elections. Michael C. Bender, WSJ, "‘Never In My Wildest Dreams’: GOP Candidates Find Key to Winning Trump’s Strong Praise," 4 Aug. 2018

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

circa 1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for captivate

see captive entry 1

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Statistics for captivate

Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for captivate

The first known use of captivate was circa 1555

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More Definitions for captivate

captivate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of captivate

: to attract and hold the attention of (someone) by being interesting, pretty, etc.

captivate

verb
cap·​ti·​vate | \ ˈkap-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce captivate (audio) \
captivated; captivating

Kids Definition of captivate

: to fascinate by some special charm The play is captivating audiences.

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