ingratiate

verb in·gra·ti·ate \ in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt \
Updated on: 20 Nov 2017

Definition of ingratiate

ingratiated; -ating
transitive verb
: to gain favor or favorable acceptance for by deliberate effort usually used with with
  • ingratiate themselves with the community leaders
  • —William Attwood

ingratiation

play \in-ˌgrā-shē-ˈā-shən\ noun

ingratiatory

play \in-ˈgrā-sh(ē-)ə-ˌtȯr-ē\ adjective

ingratiate was our Word of the Day on 08/13/2009. Hear the podcast!

Recent Examples of ingratiate from the Web

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.

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.

Origin and Etymology of ingratiate

2in- + Latin gratia grace


INGRATIATE Defined for English Language Learners

ingratiate

verb

Definition of ingratiate for English Language Learners

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


INGRATIATE Defined for Kids

ingratiate

verb in·gra·ti·ate \ in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt \

Definition of ingratiate for Students

ingratiated; ingratiating
: to gain favor for by effort
  • He ingratiates himself with teachers by being helpful.

Word Root of ingratiate

The Latin word gratus, meaning “pleasing” or “thankful,” gives us the root grat. Words from the Latin gratus have something to do with being pleasing or being thankful. To ingratiate yourself is to make others feel thankful for something you've done. To feel grateful is to feel thankful for something. Gratitude is a feeling of thankfulness. To congratulate is to express how pleasing someone's success is.



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