counsel

noun
coun·​sel | \ ˈkau̇n(t)-səl How to pronounce counsel (audio) \

Definition of counsel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : advice given especially as a result of consultation He was unwise to reject my counsel.
b : a policy or plan of action or behavior
3a archaic : purpose
b : guarded thoughts or intentions He was chary and given to keeping his own counsel.
4a plural counsel
(1) : a lawyer engaged in the trial or management of a case in court
(2) : a lawyer appointed to advise and represent in legal matters an individual client or a corporate and especially a public body

counsel

verb
coun·​sel | \ ˈkau̇n(t)-səl How to pronounce counsel (audio) \
counseled or counselled; counseling or counselling\ ˈkau̇n(t)-​s(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce counsel (audio) \

Definition of counsel (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: advise counselled them to avoid rash actions …— George Orwell

intransitive verb

: consult counseled with her husband

Examples of counsel in a Sentence

Noun We seek counsel from the rich and powerful to learn their secret … — Ken Tucker, Entertainment Weekly, 13 Feb. 2004 God had done a poor job, and Soaphead suspected that he himself could have done better. It was in fact a pity that the Maker had not sought his counsel. — Toni Morrison, The Bluest Eye, (1970) 1994 No matter how much time he is given, counsel would always like more, but the Chief Justice will not grant an extra minute unless the lawyer is responding to a question from the bench. — Robert H. Bork, The Tempting Of America, 1990 Counsel were to be employed.  … And when the matter had been decided by the lawyers, Lord Fawn was to express his regret for having suspected his lady-love! — Anthony Trollope, The Eustace Diamonds, 1871 You were unwise to reject my counsel. The student sought counsel from her teacher. She is serving as counsel for the defendant. All counsel are expected to obey the rules of the court. Verb He balked at authority and, according to Mr. Green, tuned you out if you tried to counsel him. — David Grann, New Republic, 14 Feb. 2000 She had six children, whom she counseled and with great wisdom and patience. — Erma Bombeck, The Best of Bombeck, (1965) 1967 I had counselled Catherine to dine upstairs, but as soon as he perceived her vacant seat he sent me to call her. — Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights, 1847 He counsels people who are trying to quit drinking. concerned parents counseling about the problem of substance abuse in their community See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Rosen remained in his job, crediting support from his department’s leadership team as well as White House counsel Pat Cipollone. Michael Kranish, Anchorage Daily News, 11 May 2022 The list was devised by his top legal adviser and future White House counsel, Donald F. McGahn II — a longtime Federalist Society member — working with advisers like Leonard Leo, then the group’s executive vice president. Charlie Savage, New York Times, 3 May 2022 Roberts spent the 1980s working in President Ronald Reagan's administration, serving in the White House counsel's office before moving to the Department of Justice and becoming the principal deputy solicitor general. Orlando Mayorquin, USA TODAY, 3 May 2022 John Dean was an ambitious lawyer who served as White House counsel to President Richard Nixon at the time of the Watergate break-in — which naturally complicated his relationship with Mo, his eventual wife. Tyler Aquilina, EW.com, 24 Apr. 2022 Family members of the president are required to notify the White House counsel's office of business engagements, which are then reviewed for conflicts of interest or the appearance of conflicts. Catherine Herridge, CBS News, 6 Apr. 2022 Jackson's ruling that former Trump White House counsel Don McGahn had to comply with a congressional subpoena over the administration's objections will also draw attention. Devin Dwyer, ABC News, 21 Mar. 2022 In the end, Jackson's 120-page opinion in Committee on the Judiciary v. McGahn went against the Department of Justice, which had taken up Trump's effort to prevent the former White House counsel from testifying. Joan Biskupic, CNN, 18 Mar. 2022 In 2019, Jackson ruled on a dispute between Democrats who control the House of Representatives and the Trump administration over lawmakers' efforts to subpoena former White House counsel Don McGahn to testify to Congress. Chron, 25 Feb. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Since Putin’s embrace of the region in the last decade, political strategists have been sent to African governments, including those of the CAR and Madagascar, to counsel their leaders. Sandun Munasinghe, Time, 5 Apr. 2022 So the government refused to counsel the wearing of masks or social distancing or to sponsor more testing — at least at first. Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times, 31 Mar. 2022 But that 44, seven degrees below average, seemed to counsel patience. Washington Post, 27 Feb. 2022 Negative moments are obviously less pleasant to imagine; instead, parents, teachers, and celebrities counsel us to imagine, plan for, and savor a bright future. Arthur C. Brooks, The Atlantic, 23 Dec. 2021 The firm has had to counsel some workers on what is appropriate at work, Ms. Turner added. Will Feuer, WSJ, 30 Mar. 2022 Those recommendations urge doctors to more regularly ask whether patients have guns in their home and to counsel patients on gun safety. Kay Jones, CNN, 13 Aug. 2021 Sanchez can still counsel the town on unrelated topics, Salmon said. Alexandria Bordas, San Francisco Chronicle, 9 May 2021 Providing tenants with a right to counsel and eviction diversion programs that allow tenants to make payments on back rent instead of immediately being kicked out are some of the ways to achieve this. Megan Taros, The Arizona Republic, 25 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'counsel.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of counsel

Noun

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for counsel

Noun and Verb

Middle English conseil, from Anglo-French cunseil, from Latin consilium, from consulere to consult

Learn More About counsel

Time Traveler for counsel

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near counsel

councilwoman

counsel

counselable

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Statistics for counsel

Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Counsel.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/counsel. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for counsel

counsel

noun
coun·​sel | \ ˈkau̇n-səl How to pronounce counsel (audio) \

Kids Definition of counsel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : advice given My grandfather's counsel was to be patient.
2 plural counsel : a lawyer representing someone in court

counsel

verb
counseled or counselled; counseling or counselling

Kids Definition of counsel (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to give advice to : advise She counseled him to study harder.
2 : to suggest or recommend The doctor counseled rest.

counsel

noun
coun·​sel | \ ˈkau̇n(t)-səl How to pronounce counsel (audio) \

Medical Definition of counsel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: advice given especially as a result of consultation

counsel

transitive verb
counseled or counselled; counseling or counselling\ -​s(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce counsel (audio) \

Medical Definition of counsel (Entry 2 of 2)

: to advise especially seriously and formally after consultation

counsel

noun
coun·​sel | \ ˈkau̇n-səl How to pronounce counsel (audio) \
plural counsel

Legal Definition of counsel

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: lawyer: as
a : a lawyer participating in the management or trial of a case in court …to have the assistance of counsel for his defenseU.S. Constitution amend. VI a right to counsel
b : a lawyer appointed or engaged to advise or represent a client in legal matters (as negotiations or the drafting of documents) — compare attorney

Note: A judge who has acted as counsel in a matter (as by advising an investigator) is disqualified from hearing the case.

of counsel
1 : assisting another lawyer in a case was attorney of counsel
2 : employed on a part-time basis a tax attorney will move also and become of counselNational Law Journal

counsel

transitive verb
counseled or counselled; counseling or counselling

Legal Definition of counsel (Entry 2 of 2)

: advise

History and Etymology for counsel

Noun

Old French conseil advice, from Latin consilium discussion, advice, council, from consulere to consult

More from Merriam-Webster on counsel

Nglish: Translation of counsel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of counsel for Arabic Speakers

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