encourage

verb
en·cour·age | \ in-ˈkər-ij , -ˈkə-rij , en- \
encouraged; encouraging

Definition of encourage 

transitive verb

1a : to inspire with courage, spirit, or hope : hearten she was encouraged to continue by her early success

b : to attempt to persuade : urge they encouraged him to go back to school

2 : to spur on : stimulate warm weather encourages plant growth

3 : to give help or patronage to : foster government grants designed to encourage conservation

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Other words from encourage

encourager noun

Choose the Right Synonym for encourage

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 encourage in a Sentence

They encouraged us in our work. Encourage each other with kind words. The program is meant to encourage savings. Warm weather encourages plant growth. He claims the new regulations will encourage investment. He claims the new regulations will encourage people to invest. We want to encourage students to read more. My parents encouraged me to go back to college. They encouraged her to go.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Jane and Kat encourage Sutton to pursue her dream of working in the fashion department despite her lack of experience. Bethonie Butler, chicagotribune.com, "Why it matters that the women on 'Younger' and 'The Bold Type' focus on careers as much as dating," 14 July 2018 The national security adviser, John Bolton, has publicly encouraged Trump to keep pressing Russia on election meddling, noting that in a preparatory meeting with him, Putin denied Russian state involvement, but not any Russian involvement at all. BostonGlobe.com, "Crossed signals on Russia show Trump untethered from advisers," 14 July 2018 Whirlyball also encourages customers to reserve courts, leading to staggered arrival times. Erin Hegarty, Naperville Sun, "Whirlyball business with laser tag, bowling proposed for burgeoning 'entertainment district' off Route 59 and I-88," 13 July 2018 Secretary of State Mike Pompeo raised Nguyen’s case with Vietnamese officials during his visit to the communist country on July 9 and encouraged a speedy resolution, according to the State Department. Chris Fuchs /, NBC News, "U.S. citizen arrested during protest in Vietnam scheduled to stand trial," 13 July 2018 Emergency Twitter Alerts Broward County encourages residents to stay connected with county officials before, during and after an emergency. Mary Lou Cruz, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Fort Lauderdale area events July 18-28," 13 July 2018 Above a graph showcasing spiking prices for Revlimid, a cancer drug manufactured by Celgene, the site encourages visitors to subscribe for email updates. Lev Facher, STAT, "Read the fine print: N.J. senator sets up phony health news website to attack challenger Bob Hugin," 13 July 2018 The Galena Park Emergency Management Office has encouraged residents with vehicle or property damage to call the Valero hotline at (800) 678-9355. Katherine Blunt, Houston Chronicle, "Valero agrees to pay for damages caused by East Houston oil leak," 13 July 2018 Beyond posters, the initiative encourages people to share stories about diversity on the commission's ScottsdaleForAll Facebook page. Zahra Ahmad, azcentral, "'Scottsdale for All' hopes to spread inclusiveness," 13 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for encourage

Middle English encoragen, from Anglo-French encorager, from en- + curage courage

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Learn More about encourage

Statistics for encourage

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for encourage

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

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More Definitions for encourage

encourage

verb

English Language Learners Definition of encourage

: to make (someone) more determined, hopeful, or confident

: to make (something) more appealing or more likely to happen

: to make (someone) more likely to do something : to tell or advise (someone) to do something

encourage

verb
en·cour·age | \ in-ˈkər-ij \
encouraged; encouraging

Kids Definition of encourage

1 : make more determined, hopeful, or confident : hearten Cheering fans encouraged the team.

2 : to give help or support to : aid Warm weather encourages plant growth.

Other words from encourage

encouragingly adverb “Great job,” she said encouragingly.

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Comments on encourage

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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