in·gra·ti·ate | \in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt \
ingratiated; ingratiating

Definition of ingratiate 

transitive verb

: to gain favor or favorable acceptance for by deliberate effort usually used with with ingratiate themselves with the community leaders— William Attwood

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Other Words from ingratiate

ingratiation \in-ˌgrā-shē-ˈā-shən \ noun
ingratiatory \in-ˈgrā-sh(ē-)ə-ˌtȯr-ē \ adjective

Did You Know?

Seventeenth-century English speakers combined the Latin noun gratia, meaning "grace" or "favor," with the English prefix in- to create the verb "ingratiate." When you ingratiate yourself, you are putting yourself in someone's good graces to gain their approval or favor. English words related to "ingratiate" include "gratis" and "gratuity." Both of these reflect something done or given as a favor through the good graces of the giver.

Examples of ingratiate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Rodman’s path to ingratiating himself with both Trump and Kim is serendipitous one. John Hudson, Washington Post, "A cryptocurrency for marijuana is backing Dennis Rodman’s trip to Singapore," 7 June 2018 Would Dershowitz turn up, looking to ingratiate himself with the blue-state elite by buying a leftist baked good? Christopher Bonanos, The Cut, "Searching for Alan Dershowitz on Martha’s Vineyard," 5 July 2018 The Buzz: Orgeron quickly ingratiated himself with the LSU fan base after leading the Tigers to a 6-2 finish following the firing of longtime coach Les Miles in 2016. Matt Murschel,, "Five college football coaches on the hot seat entering the 2018 season," 28 June 2018 In addition to connecting Kobach with the Trump family, Mark — an attorney from Basehor, Kan. — has guided an effort to ingratiate Kobach with labor unions and could land a role in his administration if Kobach is elected governor. Bryan Lowry, kansascity, "How Kobach met Trump: Hunting buddy links Kansas Republican and president’s family," 17 June 2018 Isla Fisher is less ingratiating as Hogan’s unpleasantly cutthroat wife. Ann Hornaday, kansascity, "A game cast makes good-natured ‘Tag’ a fun time," 14 June 2018 Since the outset of last season, Curry has cut down on his circus shots, in part to ingratiate Durant. Lee Jenkins,, "Kevin Durant and the Dagger That Foreshadowed the Broom," 12 June 2018 In recent months, both the Grimm and Donovan campaigns have gone out of their way to ingratiate themselves with Mr. Trump, who won Staten Island with 56 percent of the vote in 2016. New York Times, "Trump’s Backing of Donovan May Muddle Staten Island’s Love for Grimm," 1 June 2018 An ingratiating Kennedy then pointed out that Cohen is really funny on Instagram which, true!, "Jason Kennedy Swerved Andy Cohen's "Gay Spectrum" Question In Very Awkward Interview," 20 May 2018

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

1621, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ingratiate

in- entry 2 + Latin gratia grace

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Last Updated

31 Aug 2018

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Time Traveler for ingratiate

The first known use of ingratiate was in 1621

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More Definitions for ingratiate



English Language Learners Definition of ingratiate

: to gain favor or approval for (yourself) by doing or saying things that people like


in·gra·ti·ate | \in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt \
ingratiated; ingratiating

Kids Definition of ingratiate

: to gain favor for by effort He ingratiates himself with teachers by being helpful.

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What made you want to look up ingratiate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a state of commotion or excitement

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