in·​gra·​ti·​ate | \ in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt How to pronounce ingratiate (audio) \
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 How to pronounce ingratiate (audio) \ noun
ingratiatory \ in-​ˈgrā-​sh(ē-​)ə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce ingratiate (audio) \ 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 The Republican leader has since walked back his post- Jan. 6 criticisms of Trump and sought to again ingratiate himself with the former president, while Cheney publicly and privately insists that Trump should play no role in the future of the party. Sarah D. Wire, Los Angeles Times, "What’s going on with Kevin McCarthy and Liz Cheney?," 4 May 2021 His extravagant efforts to ingratiate himself with Mr. Trump have earned him a reputation for being an alpha lap-dog inside Mr. Trump’s kennel of acolytes. New York Times, "Kevin McCarthy, Four Months After Jan. 6, Still on Defensive Over Trump," 25 Apr. 2021 For a book whose ultimate goal is to urge people to ingratiate themselves with their colleagues or be a little less shouty in their marriages, a startling number of chapters feature tales of capricious killings and casual violence. Merve Emre, The New Yorker, "The Repressive Politics of Emotional Intelligence," 12 Apr. 2021 Whatever his background, Peltz allegedly managed to ingratiate himself with Hammond, who started at Bloomberg in 2015. Washington Post, "Opinion: Insider trading indictment highlights contacts with Bloomberg reporter," 1 Apr. 2021 Georgia’s Republican governor, Brian Kemp, who became a target of Trump’s rage and, as a result, may face a primary challenge, needs to ingratiate himself with conservatives, which suggests that the bills stand a good chance of becoming law. Jelani Cobb, The New Yorker, "The High Cost of Georgia’s Restrictive Voting Bills," 21 Mar. 2021 Besides trying to ferret out biases, lawyers can take the opportunity to make a connection, educate and even ingratiate themselves with the people who will decide the case, said Joseph Daly, emeritus professor at Mitchell Hamline School of Law. Tami Abdollah, USA TODAY, "Lawyers must find 12 jurors who can set aside what they saw in the George Floyd video. How will they find an impartial jury?," 9 Mar. 2021 Charitable causes, philanthropic endeavors and community enrichment are great ways to ingratiate a company to potential consumers and strengthen the corporate mission. Expert Panel®, Forbes, "16 Smart Ways To Stand Out In A Saturated Market," 26 Feb. 2021 She was known to sit at Sylvia’s, a Harlem fixture for politicians trying to ingratiate themselves with the Black community, with Ms. Morrison and the chef, Alexander Smalls. New York Times, "Cicely Tyson’s Harlem: Dance, Jazz, Faith and Waffles," 18 Feb. 2021

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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Time Traveler for ingratiate

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The first known use of ingratiate was in 1621

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Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ingratiate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 11 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for ingratiate



English Language Learners Definition of ingratiate

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


in·​gra·​ti·​ate | \ in-ˈgrā-shē-ˌāt How to pronounce ingratiate (audio) \
ingratiated; ingratiating

Kids Definition of ingratiate

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

Comments on ingratiate

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