caress

verb
ca·​ress | \ kə-ˈres How to pronounce caress (audio) \
caressed; caressing; caresses

Definition of caress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to treat with tokens of fondness, affection, or kindness : cherish the regiment was fed and caressed at station after station— Stephen Crane
2a : to touch or stroke lightly in a loving or endearing manner She caressed the baby's cheek.
b : to touch or affect as if with a caress echoes that caress the ear

caress

noun

Definition of caress (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or expression of kindness or affection : endearment when the gifts and caresses of mankind shall recompense the toils of study— Samuel Johnson
2a : a light stroking, rubbing, or patting a gentle caress of her shoulder
b : kiss She gave him a parting caress.

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Other Words from caress

Verb

caresser noun
caressingly \ kə-​ˈre-​siŋ-​lē How to pronounce caressingly (audio) \ adverb

Noun

caressive \ kə-​ˈre-​siv How to pronounce caressive (audio) \ adjective
caressively adverb

Synonyms for caress

Synonyms: Verb

fondle, gentle, love, pat, pet, stroke

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Examples of caress in a Sentence

Verb

She caressed the baby's cheek. A warm breeze caressed her face.

Noun

She gave the baby's cheek a gentle caress.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

At the WellChild Awards last month, the prince was spotted caressing his wife's back in a similar manner. Zoe Weiner, Glamour, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Were So Touchy-Feely at Today's Royal Engagement," 3 Oct. 2018 Likewise, François Messier Rheault’s caressing close-ups are intimately anonymous, the personalities beneath the popping veins only faintly differentiated. Denis Côté, New York Times, "Review: Six Strongmen Cultivate ‘A Skin So Soft’," 5 July 2018 This marvel is one of nature's most spectacular sights: Imagine hundreds of thousands of birds in motion, caressing the sky like a brush on canvas. Lucas Ramirez, Fox News, "'Designed for More' by Lucas Ramirez," 24 June 2018 The keyboard has ceased to be a mere function for hammers to strike strings, and has become a precious horizontal artifact to caress. Stephen Hough, New York Times, "100 Years After Debussy’s Death, He Remains the First ‘Modern’ Composer," 2 Mar. 2018 Bigger wheels: 21-inch wheels come standard ($1,000 upgrade on the RS 7), as do the excellent quilted Alcantara sport seats, which are one of if not the most comfortable sport seats to ever caress our backsides. Robert Duffer, chicagotribune.com, "2017 Audi RS 7 Performance trim is overkill," 23 Aug. 2017 Instead of feeling pain, he is calmly caressed, he is buoyed by the water and shuttled to the ocean. Chicago Tribune, chicagotribune.com, "Algren Award runner-up: "Fluid Mechanics" by Mabel Yu," 2 June 2018 The parents-to-be look off into the distance while Thompson caresses Kardashian's baby bump. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Evolution of Khloé Kardashian's Baby Bump," 9 Apr. 2018 Hadid was even seen caressing Tesfaye's face at one point in the evening. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Bella Hadid and The Weeknd Just Kissed in Cannes and Our Hearts Are Exploding," 11 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As an earth sign, Taurus loves to indulge its five sense through luxurious fabrics, enchanting aromas, and gentle caresses. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What the Position of Venus in Your Birth Chart Means for You," 31 July 2018 The range of expression in his keyboard touch encompassed caresses, rumbles and crashes. Ben Ratliff, New York Times, "Cecil Taylor, Pianist Who Defied Jazz Orthodoxy, Is Dead at 89," 6 Apr. 2018 His two dancers, who hold hands and caress, perform opposite Ryan and a female pianist, whose romance is implied through the camera angles. Dan Allen /, NBC News, "Song, dance and LGBTQ visibility reign supreme at Eurovision Song Contest," 11 May 2018 The choreographer bestowed a healing power to each simple human touch and caress, and dancers folded protectively into their partners. Laura Bleiberg, latimes.com, "Dance Theatre of Harlem comes full circle with stirring Broad Stage program," 22 Apr. 2018 Any type of massage in this area is going to require a light caress as to not cause pain. Redbook, "33 Sexy Places to Touch Your Guy," 30 Oct. 2017 The range of expression in his keyboard touch encompassed caresses, rumbles, and crashes. Ben Ratliff, BostonGlobe.com, "Cecil Taylor, 89, pianist who moved beyond jazz idiom," 7 Apr. 2018 Bruno, severely ill with malaria, barely responded to his mother's caresses. Nicholas Kristof, Anchorage Daily News, "‘Conflict is more profitable than peace’," 26 Mar. 2018 Mother's precious caress shows grand compassion towards our sorrow. Hartford Courant, courant.com, "Olympia Onofrio Grace," 18 Mar. 2018

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

Verb

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1609, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for caress

Verb

French caresser, from Italian carezzare, from carezza — see caress entry 2

Noun

French caresse, from Italian carezza, from caro dear, from Latin carus — more at charity

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Learn More about caress

Dictionary Entries near caress

Carentan

care of

care package

caress

caret

caretaker

Caretta

Statistics for caress

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Time Traveler for caress

The first known use of caress was in 1598

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More Definitions for caress

caress

verb

English Language Learners Definition of caress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to touch (someone or something) in a gentle way

caress

noun

English Language Learners Definition of caress (Entry 2 of 2)

: a gentle or loving touch

caress

noun
ca·​ress | \ kə-ˈres How to pronounce caress (audio) \

Kids Definition of caress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a tender or loving touch or hug

caress

verb
caressed; caressing

Kids Definition of caress (Entry 2 of 2)

: to touch in a tender or loving way

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More from Merriam-Webster on caress

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with caress

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for caress

Spanish Central: Translation of caress

Nglish: Translation of caress for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of caress for Arabic Speakers

Comments on caress

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