in·​vei·​gle | \ in-ˈvā-gəl How to pronounce inveigle (audio) , sometimes -ˈvē- \
inveigled; inveigling\ in-​ˈvā-​g(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce inveigle (audio) , sometimes  -​ˈvē-​ \

Definition of inveigle

transitive verb

1 : to win over by wiles : entice
2 : to acquire by ingenuity or flattery : wangle inveigled her way into a promotion

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Other Words from inveigle

inveiglement \ in-​ˈvā-​gəl-​mənt How to pronounce inveigle (audio) , sometimes  -​ˈvē-​ \ noun
inveigler \ in-​ˈvā-​g(ə-​)lər How to pronounce inveigle (audio) , sometimes  -​ˈvē-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for inveigle

lure, entice, inveigle, decoy, tempt, seduce mean to lead astray from one's true course. lure implies a drawing into danger, evil, or difficulty through attracting and deceiving. lured naive investors with get-rich-quick schemes entice suggests drawing by artful or adroit means. advertising designed to entice new customers inveigle implies enticing by cajoling or flattering. fund-raisers inveigling wealthy alumni decoy implies a luring into entrapment by artifice. attempting to decoy the enemy into an ambush tempt implies the presenting of an attraction so strong that it overcomes the restraints of conscience or better judgment. tempted by the offer of money seduce implies a leading astray by persuasion or false promises. seduced by assurances of assistance

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Inveigle, a word that dates from the 16th century, refers to the act of using clever talk, trickery, or flattery to either persuade somebody to do something or to obtain something through a similar method. What could such a word possibly have to do with blindness? Inveigle came to English from the Anglo-French verb enveegler, which means "to blind or hoodwink someone," from the adjective enveugle, meaning "blind." Enveugle derives from the Medieval Latin ab oculis, a phrase which literally translates to "lacking eyes." You might say that a person who is inveigled to do or give up something is too "blinded" by someone's words to know that he or she is being tricked.

Examples of inveigle in a Sentence

She inveigled him to write the letter. We inveigled the information from him.
Recent Examples on the Web To reach Peru, Dr. Koepcke had to first get to a port and inveigle his way onto a trans-Atlantic freighter. New York Times, 18 June 2021 The two cell-surface proteins that SARS-CoV-2 uses to make contact with its target cells and inveigle its way into them would fit into this category. The Economist, 20 Aug. 2020 And, finally, he is lost at the very end of the world when he is sent on to Edinburgh, to inveigle his way into the affections of the Scottish King James VI, poised to become the English King James I upon Elizabeth’s death. Dominic Dromgoole, New York Times, 11 Feb. 2020 Great America Alliance used the same bite in 2017 to inveigle black voters away from Democrats, targeting Georgia’s 6th Congressional District’s special election, according to the Washington Post. Savannah Behrmann, USA TODAY, 27 Feb. 2020 None of Trump’s inveigling against the Justice Department, however, would be possible without the complicity of Attorney General Bill Barr and other political appointees. Matt Ford, The New Republic, 11 Feb. 2020 Hunter’s Timon tends more toward rough playfulness, interacting with the audience in the front rows with some edgy but not too disquieting banter, and getting laughs by inveigling the unctuous Painter into eating worms. Geoffrey O’brien, The New York Review of Books, 29 Jan. 2020 Where Trump bases his judgments and opinions on instinct, Johnson is a notorious strategist who has long plotted how to inveigle his way into the United Kingdom’s top job. Dan Stewart, Time, 13 July 2018 The allegations by Mayor Giuliani over the weekend, which would lead us to believe that the Trump people think that the FBI had an undercover agent who inveigled his way into the campaign and was there as a spy on the campaign seem to be baseless. Fox News, 4 June 2018

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

1539, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for inveigle

Anglo-French enveegler, aveogler, avogler to blind, hoodwink, from avogle, enveugle blind, from Medieval Latin ab oculis, literally, lacking eyes

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The first known use of inveigle was in 1539

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Dictionary Entries Near inveigle

inveigh against


inveigle one's way

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Cite this Entry

“Inveigle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for inveigle



English Language Learners Definition of inveigle

: to persuade (someone) to do something in a clever or deceptive way
: to get (something) in a clever or deceptive way


transitive verb
in·​vei·​gle | \ in-ˈvā-gəl, -ˈvē- How to pronounce inveigle (audio) \
inveigled; inveigling

Legal Definition of inveigle

: to lure by false representations or other deceit whoever unlawfully…inveigles, decoys, kidnaps, abducts, or carries away and holds for ransom or reward or otherwise any person…shall be punished by imprisonmentU.S. Code

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Nglish: Translation of inveigle for Spanish Speakers


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