in·​ter·​cede ˌin-tər-ˈsēd How to pronounce intercede (audio)
interceded; interceding

intransitive verb

: to intervene between parties with a view to reconciling differences : mediate
interceder noun

Did you know?

The Latin cedere means "to go", so "go between" is the most literal meaning of intercede. (The same -cede root can also be seen in such words as precede and secede.) If you've been blamed unfairly for something, a friend may intercede on your behalf with your coach or teacher. More often, it will be the coach or teacher who has to intercede in a student dispute. The intercession of foreign governments has sometimes prevented conflicts from becoming worse than they otherwise would have.

Choose the Right Synonym for intercede

interpose, interfere, intervene, mediate, intercede mean to come or go between.

interpose often implies no more than this.

interposed herself between him and the door

interfere implies hindering.

noise interfered with my concentration

intervene may imply an occurring in space or time between two things or a stepping in to stop a conflict.

quarreled until the manager intervened

mediate implies intervening between hostile factions.

mediated between the parties

intercede implies acting for an offender in begging mercy or forgiveness.

interceded on our behalf

Examples of intercede in a Sentence

Their argument probably would have become violent if I hadn't interceded. When the boss accused her of lying, several other employees interceded on her behalf.
Recent Examples on the Web The woman, who doctors said had a low chance of survival, was said to have healed miraculously after praying for Acutis to intercede, according to Vatican News. Lauren Costantino, Miami Herald, 7 July 2024 Fortunately, these men were unable to get close enough to Ellsberg to inflict any harm because the Capitol Police interceded. Nick Akerman, New York Daily News, 7 July 2024 This process is a recognition accorded by the Catholic Church of a deceased person's entrance into Heaven and their capacity to intercede on behalf of individuals who pray in their name. Becca Longmire, Peoplemag, 1 July 2024 Mays, the team’s superstar, had to intercede to prevent a revolt against the manager. Matt Schudel, Washington Post, 29 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for intercede 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'intercede.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin intercedere, from inter- + cedere to go

First Known Use

1597, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of intercede was in 1597

Dictionary Entries Near intercede

Cite this Entry

“Intercede.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


in·​ter·​cede ˌint-ər-ˈsēd How to pronounce intercede (audio)
interceded; interceding
: to act as a go-between for hostile parties
: to plead in behalf of another

More from Merriam-Webster on intercede

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