per·​suade | \ pər-ˈswād How to pronounce persuade (audio) \
persuaded; persuading

Definition of persuade

transitive verb

1 : to move by argument, entreaty, or expostulation to a belief, position, or course of action
2 : to plead with : urge

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Other Words from persuade

persuader noun

Examples of persuade in a Sentence

He persuaded his friend to go back to school. She couldn't be persuaded to go. He would not let himself be persuaded into buying the more expensive stereo. I am not easily persuaded. They persuaded us that we were wrong. He persuaded himself that he had made the right choice.
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Recent Examples on the Web Clay ignored this and persuaded the Kentucky delegates and many others in the House to vote for Adams. Sarah Burns, The Conversation, "‘Stolen’ elections open wounds that may never heal," 11 Feb. 2020 But the aides persuaded the president to delay the action in hopes of enjoying positive news coverage over the acquittal, an aide said. Author: David Nakamura, Greg Miller, Anchorage Daily News, "Trump’s ousting of Vindman leaves chill among witnesses, career federal workers," 9 Feb. 2020 Both are bloodsports, but whereas a matador kills with his own sword, the falconer relies on an incredible interspecies relationship, persuading a falcon to kill smaller birds on the falconer’s behalf. Graeme Wood, WSJ, "‘The Falcon Thief’ Review: Cuckoo for Raptors," 7 Feb. 2020 Iowa traditionally winnows the primary field, codifying voter preferences and persuading low-polling candidates to give up. Time, "Forget Iowa. The Democrats Now Have Bigger 2020 Problems," 6 Feb. 2020 Shelby would likely face a tough time persuading his GOP colleagues to reverse their prohibition, after the ban was adopted last year on a 28-12 vote. al, "Richard Shelby says earmarks could return -- under right conditions," 4 Feb. 2020 Rather than persuade members of one camp or the other to switch sides, new facts and arguments have only seemed to harden the divide. Washington Post, "Republican Sen. Susan Collins finds it’s lonely in the middle," 2 Feb. 2020 Matthews suggested Shanahan’s coaching style has persuaded some players to consider coaching as a career option after their playing days. Ron Kroichick,, "Is 49ers’ Kyle Shanahan the coolest coach ever?," 30 Jan. 2020 More than 10 years ago, Gaffney set out to do the next-best thing, persuading oil, gas, and wind power companies to pass on data gathered in seismic surveys done to plan offshore oil and gas wells. Andrew Curry, Science | AAAS, "Relics washed up on beaches reveal lost world beneath the North Sea," 30 Jan. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for persuade

Latin persuadēre, from per- thoroughly + suadēre to advise, urge — more at sweet

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Time Traveler for persuade

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for persuade

Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Persuade.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for persuade


How to pronounce persuade (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of persuade

: to cause (someone) to do something by asking, arguing, or giving reasons
: to cause (someone) to believe something


per·​suade | \ pər-ˈswād How to pronounce persuade (audio) \
persuaded; persuading

Kids Definition of persuade

: to win over to a belief or way of acting : convince The weather report persuaded me to stay home.

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