exhort

verb
ex·​hort | \ ig-ˈzȯrt How to pronounce exhort (audio) \
exhorted; exhorting; exhorts

Definition of exhort

transitive verb

: to incite by argument or advice : urge strongly exhorting voters to do the right thing

intransitive verb

: to give warnings or advice : make urgent appeals

Other Words from exhort

exhorter noun

Did you know?

Exhort is a 15th-century coinage. It derives from the Latin verb hortari, meaning "to incite," and it often implies the ardent urging or admonishing of an orator or preacher. English speakers apparently took to the root hort, fiddling around with different prefixes to create other words similar in meaning to exhort. They came up with adhort (meaning the same as exhort) and dehort (a word similar to exhort and adhort but with a more specific meaning of "to dissuade"). Adhort all but vanished after the 17th century. Dehort had a slightly better run than adhort, but it is now considered archaic.

Examples of exhort in a Sentence

He exhorted his people to take back their land. She exhorted her listeners to support the proposition.
Recent Examples on the Web Following each harrowing miss leading up to his breakthrough trick at the 1999 X Games, the crowd and Hawk’s fellow competitors exhort him to try again. Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune, 5 Apr. 2022 In dueling cover pieces, former assistant secretary of defense Elbridge Colby argued the U.S. should defend Taiwan, while Professor Patrick Porter contended America’s proper role was to help and exhort Taiwan to defend itself. Jim Geraghty, National Review, 4 Feb. 2022 Trump has endorsed Youngkin multiple times and called into a rally organized by a right-wing radio host this month to exhort the crowd to vote for him. Arkansas Online, 25 Oct. 2021 Opinion shapers and policymakers would exhort moderate Muslims to do more to combat extremism. New York Times, 4 Jan. 2022 Insiders right now would exhort that the tall truck early bird detection is no more than a flighty distractor from the real issues that need to be addressed for making the AI driving system readied to drive on our public roadways. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 23 Dec. 2021 Trump has endorsed Youngkin multiple times and called into a rally organized by a right-wing radio host this month to exhort the crowd to vote for him. Arkansas Online, 25 Oct. 2021 Trump has endorsed Youngkin multiple times and called into a rally organized by a right-wing radio host this month to exhort the crowd to vote for him. Arkansas Online, 25 Oct. 2021 Trump has endorsed Youngkin multiple times and called into a rally organized by a right-wing radio host this month to exhort the crowd to vote for him. Arkansas Online, 25 Oct. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of exhort

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for exhort

Middle English, from Anglo-French exorter, from Latin exhortari, from ex- + hortari to incite — more at yearn

Learn More About exhort

Time Traveler for exhort

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast About exhort

Dictionary Entries Near exhort

exhilarator

exhort

exhortation

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for exhort

Last Updated

13 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Exhort.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/exhort. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for exhort

exhort

verb
ex·​hort | \ ig-ˈzȯrt How to pronounce exhort (audio) \
exhorted; exhorting

Kids Definition of exhort

: to try to influence by words or advice : urge strongly The Centipede was down there too, exhorting them both frantically to greater efforts …— Roald Dahl, James and the Giant Peach

More from Merriam-Webster on exhort

Nglish: Translation of exhort for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of exhort for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Food

  • a-light
  • Name these cookies!
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!