placate

verb
pla·​cate | \ ˈplā-ˌkāt How to pronounce placate (audio) , ˈpla- How to pronounce placate (audio) \
placated; placating

Definition of placate

transitive verb

: to soothe or mollify especially by concessions : appease

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Other Words from placate

placater noun
placatingly \ ˈplā-​ˌkā-​tiŋ-​lē How to pronounce placatingly (audio) , ˈpla-​ \ adverb
placation \ plā-​ˈkā-​shən How to pronounce placation (audio) , pla-​ \ noun
placative \ ˈplā-​ˌkā-​tiv How to pronounce placative (audio) , ˈpla-​ \ adjective
placatory \ ˈplā-​kə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce placatory (audio) , ˈpla-​ \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for placate

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

Soothe Yourself With the History of Placate

The earliest documented uses of "placate" in English date from the late 17th century. The word is derived from Latin placatus, the past participle of "placare," and even after more than 300 years in English, it still carries the basic meaning of its Latin ancestor: to soothe or "to appease." Other "placare" descendants in English are "implacable" (meaning "not easily soothed or satisfied") and "placation" ("the act of soothing or appeasing"). Even "please" itself, derived from Latin placēre ("to please"), is a distant relative of "placate."

Examples of placate in a Sentence

Although Rumsfeld was later thrown overboard by the Administration in an attempt to placate critics of the Iraq War, his military revolution was here to stay. — Jeremy Scahill, Nation, 2 Apr. 2007 The first step that women took in their emancipation was to adopt traditional male roles: to insist on their right to wear trousers, not to placate, not to smile, not to be decorative. — Fay Weldon, Harper's, May 1998 These spirits inhabited natural objects, like rivers and mountains, including celestial bodies, like the sun and moon. They had to be placated and their favors sought in order to ensure the fertility of the soil and the rotation of the seasons. — Stephen W. Hawking, A Brief History of Time, 1988 But it seems important to the Thunderbirds to make a big deal out of this; evidently it placates congressmen who don't think the Air Force should be in show biz. — Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated, 3 Aug. 1987 The administration placated protesters by agreeing to consider their demands. The angry customer was not placated by the clerk's apology.
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Recent Examples on the Web European leaders have distanced themselves from President Trump and focused on placating Iran in the aftermath of a U.S. drone strike that killed a top Iranian general. Tim Pearce, Washington Examiner, "European leaders beg Iran for restraint after US strike on Soleimani," 9 Jan. 2020 Fusion’s conservative critics doubtless won’t be placated by this book, even though the authors say that those critics were ultimately what made the book possible. Jennifer Szalai, New York Times, "‘Crime in Progress’ Tells the Story Behind the Steele Dossier," 10 Dec. 2019 Plus, residents — particularly in areas where state environmental laws have been used to file lawsuits to block shelters and affordable housing projects — would need to be placated. Los Angeles Times, "Desperate to ease homelessness, California officials look to New York ‘right to shelter’ policy," 21 July 2019 Those two settlements form the foundation of a plan now in jeopardy of crumbling unless PG&E can placate Newsom. Washington Post, "PG&E, California governor face off in bankruptcy dispute," 17 Dec. 2019 Moondog’s best pieces are minimalist and percussive, and incite a kind of woozy, placating trance. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, "How Moondog Captured the Sounds of New York," 9 Dec. 2019 The new version could be a way to bring in more customers, better compete with rivals like Popeyes and Chick-fil-A, and placate its franchise operators, which have been lobbying hard for the menu item. Danielle Wiener-bronner, CNN, "McDonald's is testing out a fried chicken sandwich in two cities," 2 Dec. 2019 At the same time, the center-left candidates show no sign of being placated by her latest moves. NBC News, "Eight weeks of impeachment has taken a toll on Trump," 19 Nov. 2019 There is no discernible reason the series should be followed by a film, other than placating series creator Vince Gilligan and fans who miss the world of Walter White (Bryan Cranston) and Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul). Lorraine Ali, chicagotribune.com, "‘El Camino’ review: ‘Breaking Bad’ movie proves Jesse is lost without Walt," 11 Oct. 2019

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

1678, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for placate

Latin placatus, past participle of placare — more at please

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Time Traveler for placate

Time Traveler

The first known use of placate was in 1678

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Statistics for placate

Last Updated

14 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Placate.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/placated. Accessed 22 January 2020.

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More Definitions for placate

placate

verb
How to pronounce placate (audio) How to pronounce placate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of placate

formal : to cause (someone) to feel less angry about something

placate

verb
pla·​cate | \ ˈplā-ˌkāt How to pronounce placate (audio) , ˈpla- \
placated; placating

Kids Definition of placate

: to calm the anger of The apology did little to placate customers.

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More from Merriam-Webster on placate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for placate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with placate

Spanish Central: Translation of placate

Nglish: Translation of placate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of placate for Arabic Speakers

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