con·​vinc·​ing kən-ˈvin(t)-siŋ How to pronounce convincing (audio)
: satisfying or assuring by argument or proof
a convincing test of a new product
: having power to convince of the truth, rightness, or reality of something : plausible
told a convincing story
convincingly adverb
convincingness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for convincing

valid, sound, cogent, convincing, telling mean having such force as to compel serious attention and usually acceptance.

valid implies being supported by objective truth or generally accepted authority.

a valid reason for being absent
a valid marriage

sound implies a basis of flawless reasoning or of solid grounds.

a sound proposal for reviving the economy

cogent may stress either weight of sound argument and evidence or lucidity of presentation.

the prosecutor's cogent summation won over the jury

convincing suggests a power to overcome doubt, opposition, or reluctance to accept.

a convincing argument for welfare reform

telling stresses an immediate and crucial effect striking at the heart of a matter.

a telling example of bureaucratic waste

Examples of convincing in a Sentence

Your argument isn't very convincing. They make a convincing case for reform. There is no convincing evidence to support his theory.
Recent Examples on the Web Bloom is perfectly fine as the stalwart, soft-spoken hero seeking revenge, but MacDowell never proves remotely convincing as the ruthless female baddie. Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter, 20 Feb. 2024 Wins against Brighton & Hove Albion and Brentford were achieved but the performances were hardly convincing and a 2-2 draw with Everton, when the team conceded a stoppage-time equalizer, has certainly checked any sense of momentum. Zak Garner-Purkis, Forbes, 18 Feb. 2024 Other visitors also found the foam alligators a little too convincing. Don Sweeney, Sacramento Bee, 14 Feb. 2024 It’s also outfitted with an LED that can dim and flicker, creating a convincing candlelight effect. Brandon Widder, The Verge, 2 Feb. 2024 Coach Kyle Shanahan apparently needed convincing from York and general manager John Lynch that although McCaffrey was not a quarterback or pass rusher, the cost was worth it. Gary Klein, Los Angeles Times, 9 Feb. 2024 Wokeness and the Biden Administration Perhaps the least convincing reason for such a dramatic decline in recruitment since 2021 is wokeness, i.e., the idea that the Biden administration has made military service, or patriotism itself, objectionable or distasteful to Americans. Luther Ray Abel, National Review, 9 Feb. 2024 Stanford lost at home to USC and, even with a convincing bounce-back win over UCLA, slips one place to No. 2 behind Pac-12 co-leader Colorado. Jeff Metcalfe, The Mercury News, 7 Feb. 2024 McKenna-Bruce holds the screen with a performance that’s as mercurial as her character, who embodies Britney-like not-yet-a-woman energy with a convincing combination of naiveté and knowingness. Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, 7 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'convincing.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1624, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of convincing was in 1624

Dictionary Entries Near convincing

Cite this Entry

“Convincing.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition


con·​vinc·​ing kən-ˈvin(t)-siŋ How to pronounce convincing (audio)
: causing one to believe or agree
convincingly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on convincing

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