cordial

adjective
cor·​dial | \ ˈkȯr-jəl How to pronounce cordial (audio) \

Definition of cordial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : showing or marked by warm and often hearty friendliness, favor, or approval a cordial welcome : politely pleasant and friendly two nations maintaining cordial relations
b : sincerely or deeply felt a cordial dislike for each other
2 : tending to revive, cheer, or invigorate bottles full of excellent cordial waters— Daniel Defoe
3 obsolete : of or relating to the heart : vital

cordial

noun

Definition of cordial (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : liqueur
2 : a stimulating medicine or drink

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Other Words from cordial

Adjective

cordially \ ˈkȯrj-​lē How to pronounce cordial (audio) , ˈkȯr-​jə-​ \ adverb
cordialness \ ˈkȯr-​jəl-​nəs How to pronounce cordial (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for cordial

Adjective

gracious, cordial, affable, genial, sociable mean markedly pleasant and easy in social intercourse. gracious implies courtesy and kindly consideration. the gracious award winner thanked her colleagues cordial stresses warmth and heartiness. our host was cordial as he greeted us affable implies easy approachability and readiness to respond pleasantly to conversation or requests or proposals. though wealthy, she was affable to all genial stresses cheerfulness and even joviality. a genial companion with a ready quip sociable suggests a genuine liking for the companionship of others. sociable people who enjoy entertaining

Did You Know?

Adjective

Cordial shares the Latin root cor with "concord" (meaning "harmony") and "discord" (meaning "conflict"). Cor means "heart," and each of these "cor" descendants has something to do with the heart, at least figuratively. "Concord," which comes from "con-" (meaning "together" or "with") plus "cor," suggests that one heart is with another. "Discord" combines the prefix dis- (meaning "apart") with "cor," and it implies that hearts are apart. When "cordial" was first used in the 14th century, it literally meant "of or relating to the heart," but this sense has not been in use since the 17th century. Today anything that is "cordial," be it a welcome, a hello, or an agreement, comes from the heart in a figurative sense.

Examples of cordial in a Sentence

Adjective … Conrad Black was cordial and not the least rumbustious. — Calvin Trillin, New Yorker, 17 Dec. 2001 Though its chairman, Charles Obi, was cordial to him, the others made it clear that they didn't want him. — Ishmael Reed, Japanese by Spring, 1993 My reception was cordial enough … — Robert Frost 7 Jan. 1913, in Selected Letters of Robert Frost, edited by Lawrance Thompson1964 Mr. Price now received his daughter; and having given her a cordial hug, and observed that she was grown into a woman … — Jane Austen, Mansfield Park, 1814 We received a cordial greeting from our hostess at the party. The two nations have maintained cordial relations. Noun It was fortunate that the boys never tested Alyce's magic, for the bottle she shook so fiercely at them was naught but blackberry cordial she was to deliver to Old Anna … — Karen Cushman, The Midwife's Apprentice, 1995 A boy is said to become a man when he can sip the 140-proof anise-seed cordial without wincing. — Paul L. Montgomery, New York Times, 6 Sept. 1965 "In this bottle," he said, "there is a cordial made of the juice of one of the fire-flowers that grow in the mountains of the sun. If you or any of your friends are hurt, a few drops of this will restore you." — C. S. Lewis, The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe, 1950
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective This hasn’t materialized — suggesting relations between the parties have managed to stay cordial. Tim Ingham, Rolling Stone, "How Will Live Nation Bounce Back From the Concertless Year?," 12 Apr. 2021 The image of a cordial, shy, introverted scientist unaware of political calculations or how to speak in simple sentences does not necessarily ring true. Bryan Anderson, Star Tribune, "Big effort aims to elect candidates with science backgrounds," 2 Apr. 2021 The image of a cordial, shy, introverted scientist unaware of political calculations or how to speak in simple sentences does not necessarily ring true. Bryan Anderson, Chron, "Big effort aims to elect candidates with science backgrounds," 2 Apr. 2021 Early conversations between Stellantis and the Cherokee Nation have been cordial, if not productive. Mark Phelan, Detroit Free Press, "Jeep owes the Cherokee Nation; it’s time to pay up," 5 Mar. 2021 Some turbos smack you with their power; this one is more cordial. Louis Mazzante, Popular Mechanics, "Mazda’s CX-30 Turbo Now Has Power to Go With Its Value," 9 Feb. 2021 The Republican Policy Committee confabs are typically cordial affairs, steps from the Senate chamber and without the intra-party divisions that often feature in more ideological segregated meetings during the rest of the week. Philip Elliott, Time, "Why Mitch McConnell Might Not Get a Donald Trump Reprieve," 9 Mar. 2021 Instead of Congress passing a policy supported by the vast majority of the American people and offered up by cooperative and cordial members of both parties, Congress passed nothing. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, "Joe Manchin Wants to Pass a Popular Gun Control Bill That Will Save Lives, but He Loves the Filibuster More," 5 Mar. 2021 The track fantasizes about a cordial end to a relationship. Natalia Barr, WSJ, "From Dua Lipa to Haim, the Best Songs You Should Be Listening To Right Now," 27 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun It was typically made by infusing a mix of brandy, wine and celandine juice with cloves, mace, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, ginger, sweet clover, spearmint, rosemary and cowslip for 12 hours, then distilling it into a cordial. Olivia Campbell, Smithsonian Magazine, "Part of Being a Domestic Goddess in 17th Century Europe Was Making Medicines," 1 Mar. 2021 The wine is off-dry, but balanced, with flavors of cherry cordial, marzipan and raspberries, dusted with baking spice. Washington Post, "This sauvignon blanc tastes like a splurge, but doesn’t cost like one," 2 Jan. 2021 The embodiment of lagom, it’s an easy-drinking highball with just an ounce of aquavit (gin or vodka works too), flavored with a no-cook, no-waste citrus cordial that uses the whole fruit, peel and all. Kara Newman, WSJ, "Cocktails Scandinavian Style: The New Hygge," 26 Dec. 2020 New cocktails on the menu this year include: the Jolly Koala, with gin, vermouth and pine-cardamom-sage cordial; and the Fruitcake Flip, made of brandy, rum, amaretto, fruitcake, cherry bitters and a whole egg. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, "Christmas ‘overload’ popup cocktail bars coming to Alabama," 20 Nov. 2020 Each cocktail at Miracle Bar sells for $16 and this year's cocktail menu includes: Jolly Koala made with gin, vermouth and pine-cardamom-sage cordial. Tirion Morris, The Arizona Republic, "Despite COVID-19, Christmas bars are popping up in downtown Phoenix. Here's what to expect," 18 Nov. 2020 Each day, the gift shop puts out an assortment of bourbons that always includes the standard Buffalo Trace and the Bourbon Cream cordial. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, "Doc's Morning Line: We've never seen anything like Joe Burrow in Cincinnati before.," 8 Sep. 2020 Rounding out the top five are cordials and American whiskey. Sarah Todd, Quartz, "Americans are drinking more canned cocktails during quarantine," 6 May 2020 Scotch and Irish whiskies ― and liqueurs and cordials from Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom ― were also impacted. Alfonso Cevola, Dallas News, "So what’s going on with those wine tariffs? There’s some good and bad news," 21 Feb. 2020

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for cordial

Adjective

Middle English cordiall "of the heart, cardiac, invigorating, deeply felt," borrowed from Medieval Latin cordiālis, from Latin cord-, cor "heart" + -iālis -ial

Noun

Middle English, "stimulating substance," borrowed from Medieval Latin cordiāle, noun derivative from neuter of cordiālis "of the heart, invigorating" — more at cordial entry 1

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Time Traveler for cordial

Time Traveler

The first known use of cordial was in the 14th century

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Statistics for cordial

Last Updated

18 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cordial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cordial. Accessed 23 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for cordial

cordial

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of cordial

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: politely pleasant and friendly

cordial

noun

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

US : a sweet alcoholic drink
British : a drink of heavy fruit juice that is mixed with water

cordial

adjective
cor·​dial | \ ˈkȯr-jəl How to pronounce cordial (audio) \

Kids Definition of cordial

: warm and friendly a cordial host

Other Words from cordial

cordially adverb You are cordially invited.

cordial

noun
cor·​dial | \ ˈkȯr-jəl How to pronounce cordial (audio) \

Medical Definition of cordial

: an invigorating and stimulating medicine, food, or drink

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