se·​duce si-ˈdüs How to pronounce seduce (audio)
seduced; seducing

transitive verb

: to persuade to disobedience or disloyalty
: to lead astray usually by persuasion or false promises
: to carry out the physical seduction of : entice to sexual intercourse
seducer noun
Choose the Right Synonym for seduce

lure, entice, inveigle, decoy, tempt, seduce mean to lead astray from one's true course.

lure implies a drawing into danger, evil, or difficulty through attracting and deceiving.

lured naive investors with get-rich-quick schemes

entice suggests drawing by artful or adroit means.

advertising designed to entice new customers

inveigle implies enticing by cajoling or flattering.

fund-raisers inveigling wealthy alumni

decoy implies a luring into entrapment by artifice.

attempting to decoy the enemy into an ambush

tempt implies the presenting of an attraction so strong that it overcomes the restraints of conscience or better judgment.

tempted by the offer of money

seduce implies a leading astray by persuasion or false promises.

seduced by assurances of assistance

Examples of seduce in a Sentence

He tried to seduce her. She was seduced by an older man. The other team seduced him with a better offer.
Recent Examples on the Web The album seduces with glee, setting soothing traditional harmonies atop varied tempos, feeling more dynamic and cohesive than the group’s previous albums in its embrace of electro-pop, funk, and folk fusions. Chinonso Ihekire, Rolling Stone, 14 Feb. 2024 California Vegas parties, celebrities and boozy lunches: How legal titan Tom Girardi seduced the State Bar March 6, 2021 In the 24 hours after publication, Girardi blitzed The Times with messages. Matt Hamilton, Los Angeles Times, 12 Feb. 2024 His scheming mother, a former Hong Kong supermodel, puts forth a proposal: attend his sister’s wedding at a tropical luxury resort and seduce a woman with money among the who’s who of the affluent. Ew Staff Published,, 20 Dec. 2023 In the last year, her bold, figurative paintings have seduced the art world on multiple continents. Dodie Kazanjian, Vogue, 30 Jan. 2024 Her character is refreshingly uninhibited, easily seducing a fellow cop 20 years her junior early in the series. Andrea Duncan-Mao, Vulture, 28 Jan. 2024 Each text seduces readers with the drama of its own importance. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, 11 Jan. 2024 In the film, Joe is 13 when he is first seduced by Julianne Moore’s 36-year-old character. Seth Abramovitch, The Hollywood Reporter, 4 Jan. 2024 The man who seduced the 7th Fleet The prisoner swap, the largest yet between the Biden administration and the Maduro government, comes amid months of negotiations on a range of concerns. Craig Whitlock, Washington Post, 20 Dec. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'seduce.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Late Latin seducere, from Latin, to lead away, from se- apart + ducere to lead — more at tow entry 1

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of seduce was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near seduce

Cite this Entry

“Seduce.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


se·​duce si-ˈd(y)üs How to pronounce seduce (audio)
seduced; seducing
: to persuade to be disobedient or disloyal
: to persuade to do wrong
seduced into crime
: to persuade to have sexual intercourse especially for the first time
seducer noun

More from Merriam-Webster on seduce

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