con·​jure | \ sense vt 2 & vi senses ˈkän-jər also ˈkən-; sense vt 1 kən-ˈju̇r \
conjured; conjuring\ˈkänj-​riŋ, ˈkän-​jə-​, ˈkənj-​, ˈkən-​jə-​; kən-​ˈju̇r-​iŋ \

Definition of conjure 

transitive verb

1 : to charge or entreat earnestly or solemnly "I conjure you … to weigh my case well … "— Sheridan Le Fanu

2a : to summon by or as if by invocation or incantation

b(1) : to affect or effect by or as if by magic

(2) : imagine, contrive often used with up We conjure up our own metaphors for our own needs …— R. J. Kaufmannconjured up a clever plan to raise the money

(3) : to bring to mind words that conjure pleasant images often used with up conjure up memories

intransitive verb

1a : to summon a devil or spirit by invocation or incantation

b : to practice magical arts … prayed and conjured, but all was useless … Herman Melville

2 : to use a conjurer's tricks : juggle

conjure with

chiefly British : to treat or regard as important Victor Hugo is a name to conjure with— Peter France

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Examples of conjure in a Sentence

a magician who conjures live doves from silk scarves The students conjured a clever scheme to raise the money they needed.

Recent Examples on the Web

Complex interactions of outrage from both parties’ bases conjured up the presidency of Donald Trump, who is the mighty Wurlitzer of the art form. Lance Morrow, WSJ, "America Is Addicted to Outrage. Is There a Cure?," 30 Nov. 2018 The pattern is slightly equestrian-themed, conjuring up visions of the Louis Vuitton and Hermès scarves that fill our grandmothers’ closets. Avery Matera, Teen Vogue, "Zara's Belt Print Tunic Is Already a Fall Favorite," 24 Aug. 2018 Historically, horror movies could unnerve audiences by conjuring up an empty field or rambling mansion, far enough out in the country that no one could hear the protagonists screaming. Tasha Robinson, The Verge, "Modern horror films are finding their scares in dead phone batteries," 16 Aug. 2018 In each instance, Ms. Goldberg challenges and expands our ideas of blackness by conjuring up an audible signifier typically identified with whiteness. Aisha Harris, New York Times, "When Black Performers Use Their ‘White Voice’," 10 July 2018 These, by contrast, are in their own way as memorable as the buildings around them — conjuring up adventurous small worlds that include such unexpected touches as marble-studded panels that screen a ventilation shaft from the parking garage below. John King,, "Civic Center makeover: Here’s the plan to revamp the heart of SF," 29 June 2018 Lelio and cinematographer Danny Cohen emphasize blacks, browns, and grays, conjuring up a world drained of color. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "The not-so-incredibly-true adventure of two Orthodox Jewish girls in love," 4 May 2018 With all the over-the-top tutorials being conjured up on YouTube and Instagram, there are certainly no shortage of ways to go all out. Macaela Mackenzie, Allure, "Sugarpill Is Launching Two Sparkly Lipsticks for Halloween, Called Trick and Treat," 25 Sep. 2018 The altar is dated A.D. 544 and depicts the Tikal ruler Chak Took Ich'aak conjuring two local gods from a shaft in the form of a snake. Fox News, "Experts: Mayan altar hints at ancient intrigue," 14 Sep. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for conjure

Middle English, from Anglo-French conjurer, from Latin conjurare to join in taking an oath, from com- + jurare to swear — more at jury

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Statistics for conjure

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for conjure

The first known use of conjure was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for conjure



English Language Learners Definition of conjure

: to make (something) appear or seem to appear by using magic

: to make you think of (something)

: to create or imagine (something)


con·​jure | \ˈkän-jər, ˈkən-jər\
conjured; conjuring

Kids Definition of conjure

1 : to practice magical arts

2 : imagine sense 1 conjure up an image

3 : to produce by or as if by magic Conjuring up portable, waterproof fires was a specialty of Hermione's.— J. K. Rowling, Chamber of Secrets

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More from Merriam-Webster on conjure

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with conjure

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for conjure

Spanish Central: Translation of conjure

Nglish: Translation of conjure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of conjure for Arabic Speakers

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a nest or breeding place

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