obe·​di·​ent | \ ō-ˈbē-dē-ənt How to pronounce obedient (audio) , ə-\

Definition of obedient

: submissive to the restraint or command of authority : willing to obey an obedient child an obedient dog obedient to those whom he feared— A. N. Wilson

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Other Words from obedient

obediently adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for obedient

obedient, docile, tractable, amenable mean submissive to the will of another. obedient implies compliance with the demands or requests of one in authority. obedient to the government docile implies a predisposition to submit readily to control or guidance. a docile child tractable suggests having a character that permits easy handling or managing. tractable animals amenable suggests a willingness to yield or cooperate because of a desire to be agreeable or because of a natural open-mindedness. amenable to new ideas

Examples of obedient in a Sentence

that boy is so obedient that he does everything the first time he is asked

Recent Examples on the Web

For centuries, people have selectively bred dogs to be obedient and responsive. Carrie Arnold, National Geographic, "Cats know their names—why it's harder for them than dogs," 4 Apr. 2019 The waves, ever obedient to their gusty master, built to about 3 feet. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Smith: Lake Michigan charter outing provides fresh fish and perspectives," 15 June 2019 Much like any other state, Yugoslavia trained its citizens by way of public rituals to be patriots, taught them to be enthusiastically obedient. Aleksandar Hemon, The New Yorker, "My Mother and the Failed Experiment of Yugoslavia," 5 June 2019 Ever obedient, Silvia finds a restroom and pees on the stick. Jennifer Haigh, New York Times, "A Buzzworthy Debut About a Mysterious and Secluded Artists’ Retreat," 29 June 2018 Trump is similarly unpopular in France, and President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit to Washington — during which the two leaders exchanged a number of physical touches — was roasted in the French press, with Macron portrayed as an obedient child. Karen Deyoung, Washington Post, "Allies fume over Trump’s withdrawal from Iran deal but have few options to respond," 14 May 2018 Among Brazilians who favored respectful, obedient, and good-mannered kids, four times as many chose Bolsonaro. Marc J. Hetherington, Vox, "How you think about raising children says a lot about your political views," 29 Nov. 2018 Across Latin America in recent years, people who prefer obedient, disciplined children have voted consistently for right-wing populists such as Porfirio Lobo in Honduras and Otto Perez Molina in Guatemala. Marc J. Hetherington, Vox, "How you think about raising children says a lot about your political views," 29 Nov. 2018 No longer ruled by the Habsburg king or obedient to the pope, the Dutch were a Protestant republic — fiercely independent and proud. Rick Steves' Europe, The Seattle Times, "Specialized tours enrich travel," 14 Nov. 2018

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

13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for obedient

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin oboedient-, oboediens, from present participle of oboedīre "to follow the commands of, submit to" — more at obey

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Statistics for obedient

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for obedient

The first known use of obedient was in the 13th century

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English Language Learners Definition of obedient

: willing to do what someone tells you to do or to follow a law, rule, etc. : willing to obey


obe·​di·​ent | \ ō-ˈbē-dē-ənt How to pronounce obedient (audio) \

Kids Definition of obedient

: willing to do as told by someone in authority : willing to obey

Other Words from obedient

obediently adverb

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More from Merriam-Webster on obedient

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with obedient

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for obedient

Spanish Central: Translation of obedient

Nglish: Translation of obedient for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obedient for Arabic Speakers

Comments on obedient

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