solicit

verb
so·​lic·​it | \ sə-ˈli-sət How to pronounce solicit (audio) \
solicited; soliciting; solicits

Definition of solicit

transitive verb

1a : to make petition to : entreat
b : to approach with a request or plea solicited Congress for funding
2 : to urge (something, such as one's cause) strongly
3a : to entice or lure especially into evil
b : to proposition (someone) especially as or in the character of a prostitute
4 : to try to obtain by usually urgent requests or pleas solicited donations

intransitive verb

1 : to make solicitation : importune
2 of a prostitute : to offer to have sexual relations with someone for money

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Synonyms for solicit

Synonyms

canvass (also canvas), interview, poll, survey

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Choose the Right Synonym for solicit

ask, request, solicit mean to seek to obtain by making one's wants known. ask implies no more than the statement of the desire. ask a favor of a friend request implies greater formality and courtesy. requests the pleasure of your company solicit suggests a calling attention to one's wants or desires by public announcement or advertisement. a letter soliciting information

What object does solicit take?

When used as a transitive verb, solicit can take as an object either the thing being requested or the source from which the thing is requested:

Enterprising capitalists have been soliciting funds on the Internet for years, turning to a passel of sites like Kickstarter to aggregate small commitments from like-minded individuals on behalf of a new idea or worthy cause.
Dave Flessner, The Chattanooga Times Free Press, 5 Nov. 2015

County supervisors and staff spent much of the remainder of the board retreat planning for a series of focus groups that will solicit community input for the strategic plan.
Carmen Forman, The Roanoke Times, 31 Jan. 2016

They could be so nimble because they aggressively solicited a small group of doubters and broadcast their misgivings as if they were based on rigorous and systematic research.
Allan M. Brandt, The Cigarette Century, 2007

They are among the 9,500 volunteers, says the campaign, who have signed up to solicit their friends and families by hosting individual fund-raising Web pages for Obama.
Karen Tumulty, Time, 16 July 2007

Examples of solicit in a Sentence

The center is soliciting donations to help victims of the earthquake. The company is soliciting bids from various firms. The organization is soliciting new memberships. The newspaper's editors want to solicit opinions from readers. The organization is soliciting for donations. Special interest groups are soliciting Congress for funds. The prostitutes were arrested for soliciting customers.
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Recent Examples on the Web

For him, that means closed tracks and computer simulations; after conducting a public education campaign and soliciting feedback, deployment on public streets will inevitably follow. Betsy Morais, Longreads, "The Menace and the Promise of Autonomous Vehicles," 13 June 2018 But those of you who toil in Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on Windows have to wait for until Microsoft solicits more feedback from a broader set of users. Edward C. Baig, USA TODAY, "Three changes coming to Microsoft Office: simplified `ribbon', new icons, better search," 13 June 2018 The committee began to solicit feedback on solutions to improve school safety. Dave Hyde, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Hyde: DeVos just the latest in gun-shootings debate to ignore guns | Commentary," 7 June 2018 Caltrans will hold a series of open houses this month to solicit feedback from residents. Tony Bizjak And Kellen Browning, sacbee, "Toll lanes on the Yolo Causeway? State begins tackling I-80 bottlenecks with creative ideas," 4 June 2018 Smith arrived to pick up the car and solicit feedback. Melanie D.g. Kaplan, miamiherald, "Camping without the hassle: New service rents you all the gear you need, plus the car | Miami Herald," 26 May 2018 On Monday night, Mack said board member Fred Pedersen will take the letter, which the PSOs have already received, to the next PSO meeting and solicit feedback. Bob Sandrick, cleveland.com, "Brecksville-Broadview Heights school board wants to stop personal attacks on Facebook," 24 Apr. 2018 The Internet Health Report is itself an open source publication, and Mozilla is soliciting feedback on it. Louise Matsakis, WIRED, "Mozilla Diagnoses the Health of the Global Internet," 10 Apr. 2018 The railroad group didn’t panic a few years ago when the Expo board started soliciting feedback for a multi-million-dollar makeover for the 34-acre property. Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle, "Tiny railroaders battle with state Expo over Napa’s past, future," 7 Apr. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for solicit

Middle English, to disturb, promote, from Anglo-French solliciter, from Latin sollicitare to disturb, from sollicitus anxious, from sollus whole (from Oscan; akin to Greek holos whole) + citus, past participle of ciēre to move — more at safe, -kinesis

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Dictionary Entries near solicit

solferino

solgel

soli

solicit

solicitant

solicitation

soliciter

Statistics for solicit

Last Updated

12 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for solicit

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

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More Definitions for solicit

solicit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of solicit

formal
: to ask for (something, such as money or help) from people, companies, etc.
: to ask (a person or group) for money, help, etc.
: to offer to have sex with (someone) in return for money

solicit

verb
so·​lic·​it | \ sə-ˈli-sət How to pronounce solicit (audio) \
solicited; soliciting

Kids Definition of solicit

1 : to come to with a request or plea We solicited local businesses for donations.
2 : to try to get by asking or pleading They solicited the help of their neighbors.

solicit

transitive verb
so·​lic·​it | \ sə-ˈli-sət How to pronounce solicit (audio) \

Legal Definition of solicit

1 : to make petition to solicit the court
2 : to ask, induce, advise, or command (a person) to do something and especially to commit a crime — compare coerce, importune
3 : to attempt to persuade (a person) to purchase something
4 : to attempt to bring about or obtain by soliciting a person solicit bribes

intransitive verb

1 : to make solicitation
2 of a prostitute : to offer to have sexual relations with someone for money

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More from Merriam-Webster on solicit

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with solicit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for solicit

Spanish Central: Translation of solicit

Nglish: Translation of solicit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of solicit for Arabic Speakers

Comments on solicit

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