Definition of exhort
: to incite by argument or advice : urge strongly exhorting voters to do the right thing
: to give warnings or advice : make urgent appeals
exhort was our Word of the Day on 03/14/2014. Hear the podcast!
Examples of exhort in a Sentence
He exhorted his people to take back their land.
She exhorted her listeners to support the proposition.
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. People in the 16th century apparently liked the root -hort, but they couldn't resist fiddling around with different prefixes to create other words similar in meaning to "exhort." They came up with adhort and dehort. Adhort was short-lived and became obsolete after the 17th century. Dehort was similar to exhort and adhort but with a more specific meaning of "to dissuade." It had a better run than adhort, being used well into the late 19th century, but it is now considered archaic.
Origin and Etymology of exhort
Middle English, from Anglo-French exorter, from Latin exhortari, from ex- + hortari to incite — more at yearn
First Known Use: 15th century
EXHORT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of exhort for English Language Learners
: to try to influence (someone) by words or advice : to strongly urge (someone) to do something
EXHORT Defined for Kids
Definition of exhort for Students
: 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
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up exhort? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).