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)

2 : a stimulating medicine or drink

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Other Words from cordial

Adjective

cordially \ ˈkȯrj-​lē How to pronounce cordially (audio) , ˈkȯr-​jə-​ \ adverb
cordialness \ ˈkȯr-​jəl-​nəs How to pronounce cordialness (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 The senator's relationship with Trump has gone from icy as the two fought for the GOP's presidential nomination in 2016 to much more cordial today. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "In new book, John Bolton reportedly says Trump worried about 'son of a b**** Rand Paul'," 21 June 2020 Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said Brooks' cordial and cooperative demeanor before the attempt to arrest him played a major role in the decision to charge Rolfe, because Brooks did not appear to present a threat. Jordan Culver, USA TODAY, "Fired Atlanta police officer Garrett Rolfe charged with felony murder in shooting death of Rayshard Brooks," 17 June 2020 And while Xi and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi have ostensibly maintained a cordial relationship, with face-to-face meetings in both 2018 and 2019, most galling for New Delhi is Beijing’s aggressive courting of India’s old enemy, Pakistan. Time, "China and India Try to Cool Nationalist Anger After Deadly Border Clash," 17 June 2020 At first their talk, which lasted over 20 minutes, was cordial, according to the body camera video released by police. CBS News, "Rayshard Brooks' widow wants officers charged: "It was murder. That was not justified."," 15 June 2020 Apolitical by nature and inclination, military officers have sought to maintain a cordial, professional relationship with Trump. Michael Collins, USA TODAY, "Trump heads to West Point amid tension with top military brass and a nation whipsawed by racial tension," 13 June 2020 In China, his relations with government officials could hardly be more cordial. Grady Mcgregor, Fortune, "Tesla’s love affair with China," 11 June 2020 Still, the younger Bush and Trump have by no means enjoyed a cordial relationship with each other. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Mitch McConnell: Obama 'should have kept his mouth shut' on Trump's handling of COVID-19," 12 May 2020 Ankara has cordial relations with eastern neighbor Iran, and enjoys warm ties with Trump, despite severe strains with Congress over a Russian missile purchase. Jennifer Jacobs, Bloomberg.com, "U.S. Suspects Iran Reprisal Deliberately Missed American Troops," 8 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun 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 From Maple Brie and cheddar apple shooters to meatball sliders, French Macaroons to chocolate mousse cordials, the food was meant to engage the senses and sensibilities. Denise Coffey, courant.com, "A Seasonal Tradition Tastefully Done," 4 Dec. 2019 Liqueurs, cordials and Irish and Scotch whiskies will also face tariffs of 25%. CBS News, "U.S. slaps new tariffs on European wine, whiskey, planes and much more," 18 Oct. 2019 Beverages: Tea, coffee, Irish and Scotch whiskies, liqueurs and cordials, wine, brandy, vodka and tequila. Kelly Tyko, USA TODAY, "When new, higher tariffs are scheduled to start on Chinese imports and what may cost more," 23 Aug. 2019 Krasi serves small plates paired with an all-natural Greek wine list; downstairs, Hecate serves cocktails, cordials, and aperitifs. Kara Baskin, BostonGlobe.com, "Say hello to Shy Bird and soon-to-arrive Orfano," 21 Aug. 2019 They quick-freeze berries or make jams, vinegars and cordials. Rebecca Powers, Washington Post, "On your next summer vacation, look for berried treasure," 13 Aug. 2019 Sugarfina has become well-known for their alcohol-infused and inspired candies like Champagne bears, single malt scotch cordials peach bellini gummies. Staff Reports, Houston Chronicle, "Sweet treat specialist Sugarfina coming to Market Street," 5 July 2018

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

28 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cordial.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cordial. Accessed 3 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for cordial

cordial

adjective
How to pronounce cordial (audio)

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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