en·​cour·​age·​ment | \ in-ˈkər-ij-mənt How to pronounce encouragement (audio) , -ˈkə-rij-, en- \

Definition of encouragement

1 : the act of encouraging : the state of being encouraged
2 : something that encourages

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Examples of encouragement in a Sentence

Our aim is the encouragement of investment. the encouragement of plant growth teachers who give their students a lot of encouragement With support and encouragement from their parents, the students organized a fundraiser. They offered him gifts of money and other encouragements.
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Recent Examples on the Web Although Ngomane never explicitly references American politics, her encouragement to maintain hope — while taking action — can read like a playbook for people frustrated by seemingly intractable partisanship. Washington Post, "What is ‘ubuntu,’ and might it have influenced Meghan and Prince Harry’s Megxit?," 20 Jan. 2020 Even the audience gets to sing a line or two, with her encouragement. Jessica Derschowitz, EW.com, "In Broadway's For The Girls, Kristin Chenoweth is center stage — but she lets everyone shine: Review," 13 Nov. 2019 Hoping to thank the Brooks Brothers saleswoman for her early encouragement, Mr. T. returned to the store. Henry Alford, The New Yorker, "Adventures of a Caftan-Curious Man," 11 Nov. 2019 Doumbouya teammates on the bench went nuts with Thon Maker and Christian Wood leading the encouragement. Vince Ellis, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Pistons rookie Sekou Doumbouya's emphatic dunk goes viral in win vs. Cavaliers," 8 Jan. 2020 And at the encouragement of her mom, Charlotte dipped into a curtsy like a pro. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, "Princess Charlotte Shows Off Her Picture-Perfect Curtsy to the Queen on Christmas," 26 Dec. 2019 The 1862 lyrics were almost immediately updated to remove encouragement of heavy drinking. Anne Lawrence-mathers, Quartz, "Reinvention of Christmas decorations is a historical tradition," 24 Dec. 2019 Ellen DeGeneres recently brought the stars of a viral video of Belgian dancers, coach Jeny Bonsenge and her nine-year-old student, Anae, onto her talk show—at the encouragement of Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle Texted Ellen DeGeneres to Get This Dancing Duo on Her Talk Show," 4 Nov. 2019 But the authorities stated straightforwardly that their main reason for clamping down was the encouragement the protests have received from Mukhtar Ablyazov, a Kazakh oligarch based in France. The Economist, "Kazakhstan promises to allow public protests, just not yet," 26 Sep. 2019

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

1549, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for encouragement

Time Traveler

The first known use of encouragement was in 1549

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Statistics for encouragement

Last Updated

4 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Encouragement.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/encouragement. Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for encouragement


How to pronounce encouragement (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of encouragement

: the act of making something more appealing or more likely to happen
: something that makes someone more determined, hopeful, or confident
: something that makes someone more likely to do something


en·​cour·​age·​ment | \ in-ˈkər-ij-mənt How to pronounce encouragement (audio) \

Kids Definition of encouragement

1 : something that gives hope, determination, or confidence Winning was just the encouragement she needed.
2 : the act of giving hope or confidence to His teacher's encouragement helped his grades.

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