noun per·sua·sion \ pər-ˈswā-zhən \
|Updated on: 18 Aug 2018

Definition of persuasion

1 a : the act or process or an instance of persuading
b : a persuading argument
c : the ability to persuade : persuasiveness
2 : the condition of being persuaded
3 a : an opinion held with complete assurance
b : a system of religious beliefs; also : a group adhering to a particular system of beliefs
4 : kind, sort

Examples of persuasion in a Sentence

  1. It would take a lot of persuasion to get him to agree to such an offer.

  2. Most kids don't need much persuasion to use computers.

  3. people of all different persuasions

Recent Examples of persuasion from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of persuasion

Middle English persuasioun, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French persuasion, from Latin persuasion-, persuasio, from persuadēre

Synonym Discussion of persuasion

opinion, view, belief, conviction, persuasion, sentiment mean a judgment one holds as true. opinion implies a conclusion thought out yet open to dispute.
    • each expert seemed to have a different opinion
view suggests a subjective opinion.
    • very assertive in stating his views
belief implies often deliberate acceptance and intellectual assent.
    • a firm belief in her party's platform
conviction applies to a firmly and seriously held belief.
    • the conviction that animal life is as sacred as human
persuasion suggests a belief grounded on assurance (as by evidence) of its truth.
    • was of the persuasion that everything changes
sentiment suggests a settled opinion reflective of one's feelings.
    • her feminist sentiments are well-known

PERSUASION Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of persuasion for English Language Learners

  • : the act of causing people to do or believe something : the act or activity of persuading people

  • : a particular type of belief or way of thinking

PERSUASION Defined for Kids


noun per·sua·sion \ pər-ˈswā-zhən \

Definition of persuasion for Students

1 : the act of convincing
2 : the power to convince
3 : a way of believing : belief
  • He and his wife are of the same persuasion.

Medical Dictionary


noun per·sua·sion \ pər-ˈswā-zhən \

medical Definition of persuasion

: a method of treating neuroses consisting essentially in rational conversation and reeducation

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up persuasion? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


resembling the blue of the sky

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet-pasta-spelling-help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!