Definition of mollify
- mollified the staff with a raise
- Shaving cream mollifies the beard.
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He tried to mollify his critics with an apology.
All attempts to mollify the extremists have failed.
The landlord fixed the heat, but the tenants still were not mollified.
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Mollify, pacify, appease, and placate all mean "to ease the anger or disturbance of," although each implies a slightly different way of pouring oil on troubled waters. Pacify suggests the restoration of a calm or peaceful state, while appease implies the quieting of insistent demands by making concessions; you can appease appetites and desires as well as persons. Placate is similar to appease, but it often indicates a more complete transformation of bitterness to goodwill. Mollify, with its root in Latin mollis, meaning "soft," implies soothing hurt feelings or anger.
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
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