em·bold·en | \im-ˈbōl-dən \
emboldened; emboldening; emboldens

Definition of embolden 

transitive verb

: to instill with boldness or courage

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Choose the Right Synonym for embolden

encourage, inspirit, hearten, embolden mean to fill with courage or strength of purpose. encourage suggests the raising of one's confidence especially by an external agency. the teacher's praise encouraged the students to greater efforts inspirit, somewhat literary, implies instilling life, energy, courage, or vigor into something. patriots inspirited the people to resist hearten implies the lifting of dispiritedness or despondency by an infusion of fresh courage or zeal. a hospital patient heartened by good news embolden implies the giving of courage sufficient to overcome timidity or reluctance. emboldened by her first success, she tried an even more difficult climb

Examples of embolden in a Sentence

his poor showing in his first swim meet just emboldened him to train even harder

Recent Examples on the Web

That would make the summit another win for Putin, normalizing and emboldening him and his Kremlin kleptocrats. Evelyn Farkas, Time, "How Trump Could Actually Make the Summit with Putin a Success," 9 July 2018 This has created constant fear of jailing and deportation among communities of color, and Trump's backers only serve to embolden it. refinery29.com, "Cynthia Nixon: "If Mike Pence Is Attacking Me, I'm Doing Something Right"," 6 July 2018 But that Establishment’s influence over the president has rapidly declined in recent months, as Trump’s growing comfort in the Oval Office has emboldened him to chart his own course (particularly on matters of trade). Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump to Meet Putin in Helsinki for Summit Next Month," 28 June 2018 Trump’s election has emboldened me to start telling my story. Catalina Cruz, Marie Claire, "I'm a DREAMer Who Grew Up Undocumented, Poor, and Terrified. That's Why I'm Running for Office.," 22 June 2018 While that’s good news, to be sure, the sheer time and energy necessary to bring such cases to court could do more to dissuade women than to embolden them. Valentina Zarya, Fortune, "Kim Kardashian, Zola, Ali Wong: Broadsheet for May 4th," 4 May 2018 Ruth, emboldened by a growing sense of her own victimhood (and by a Valium-Klonopin cocktail), strikes back. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, "The Love Story of Debbie and Ruth," 10 July 2018 Other attacks might embolden people who might not have been predisposed to do it. Caroline Simon, USA TODAY, "Newsrooms across the country upping security after shooting at Capital Gazette," 28 June 2018 Former diplomats are already warning that China, emboldened by the complete lack of consequences Russia faced after the 2016 election, is poised to start replicating their political interference. Luke Darby, GQ, "Tech Companies Asked the FBI for Help Fighting Fake News and the FBI Told Them No," 26 June 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for embolden

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for embolden

The first known use of embolden was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of embolden

: to make (someone) more confident

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Comments on embolden

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