mol·​li·​fy | \ ˈmä-lə-ˌfī How to pronounce mollify (audio) \
mollified; mollifying

Definition of mollify

transitive verb

1 : to soothe in temper or disposition : appease mollified the staff with a raise
2 : to reduce the rigidity of : soften Shaving cream mollifies the beard.
3 : to reduce in intensity : assuage, temper Time mollified his anger.

Other Words from mollify

mollification \ ˌmä-​lə-​fə-​ˈkā-​shən How to pronounce mollify (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for mollify

pacify, appease, placate, mollify, propitiate, conciliate mean to ease the anger or disturbance of. pacify suggests a soothing or calming. pacified by a sincere apology appease implies quieting insistent demands by making concessions. appease their territorial ambitions placate suggests changing resentment or bitterness to goodwill. a move to placate local opposition mollify implies soothing hurt feelings or rising anger. a speech that mollified the demonstrators propitiate implies averting anger or malevolence especially of a superior being. propitiated his parents by dressing up conciliate suggests ending an estrangement by persuasion, concession, or settling of differences. conciliating the belligerent nations

The Difference Between Mollify, Appease, and Placate

Mollify, like its synonyms pacify, appease, and placate, means "to ease the anger or disturbance of." But mollify is particularly well-suited for referring to an act of soothing hurt feelings or anger; it comes from the Latin mollis, meaning "soft."

Examples of mollify in a Sentence

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.
Recent Examples on the Web But the explanation did little to mollify employees, who remain stunned by the abrupt closure of a business that had been a fixture of the studio advertising business for more than two decades. Wendy Lee, Los Angeles Times, 27 July 2022 In an attempt to mollify regulators, Didi announced plans to move its listing from New York to Hong Kong. Nicholas Gordon, Fortune, 8 June 2022 One was his decision to limit weapons sales to Taiwan to mollify Beijing, opting for stability over ideology. Robert D. Kaplan, WSJ, 26 Aug. 2022 But the guides have done little to mollify activists and some students who said the new language decree left them feeling ostracized. New York Times, 20 July 2022 As tech staffers raced to fix the problem and mollify unhappy customers, Mr. Armstrong offered encouragement, assuring a tech employee the CEO stood behind him. Gregory Zuckerman, WSJ, 5 Aug. 2022 Didi’s investors voted in May to delist from the New York Stock Exchange, in hopes that a return home would help mollify Beijing regulators. Pei-lin Wu, Washington Post, 21 July 2022 Most states have some form of exemptions for reasons of personal or religious beliefs, a legacy from the 1960s and ’70s, when, as a way to mollify resistance and get mandates passed, legislators included these loopholes. New York Times, 25 May 2022 The Prime Minister agreed to lift fuel price caps, increase taxes on the wealthy and slash the budget deficit in order to mollify the lender-of-last-resort. Nicholas Gordon, Fortune, 16 June 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mollify.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of mollify

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for mollify

Middle English mollifien, from Middle French mollifier, from Late Latin mollificare, from Latin mollis soft; akin to Greek amaldynein to soften, Sanskrit mṛdu soft, and probably to Greek malakos soft, amblys dull, Old English meltan to melt

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The first known use of mollify was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

30 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Mollify.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Oct. 2022.

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More Definitions for mollify


mol·​li·​fy | \ ˈmä-lə-ˌfī How to pronounce mollify (audio) \
mollified; mollifying

Kids Definition of mollify

: to soothe in temper or disposition

More from Merriam-Webster on mollify

Nglish: Translation of mollify for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mollify for Arabic Speakers


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