sua·​sion | \ ˈswā-zhən How to pronounce suasion (audio) \

Definition of suasion

: the act of influencing or persuading

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from suasion

suasive \ ˈswā-​siv How to pronounce suasive (audio) , -​ziv \ adjective
suasively adverb
suasiveness noun

Examples of suasion in a Sentence

a defense lawyer uses not only legal arguments but also moral suasion to appeal to a jury's sense of right and wrong

Recent Examples on the Web

That lack of experience is almost certain to make Ratcliffe an ineffective DNI, a position that has little direct power and whose few levers and moral suasion only Clapper—the longest-serving DNI yet—managed to handle effectively. Garrett M. Graff, WIRED, "The Danger of John Ratcliffe," 30 July 2019 Officials have also resorted to moral suasion to prevent money from leaving. Nathaniel Taplin, WSJ, "Has the Big Yuan Short Finally Arrived?," 26 June 2018 Liberal states have an obligation to expose and chastise this export of oppression, however limited their tools of suasion. The Economist, "Does China’s digital police state have echoes in the West?," 31 May 2018 Recent revelations around the improper acquisition of millions of Facebook users’ data for the purposes of political suasion do not inspire much confidence in the social network’s ability to protect people’s personal information. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "Cyber Saturday—The Case For and Against #DeleteFacebook," 24 Mar. 2018 This assumes that there is a finite pool of military power and economic influence and diplomatic suasion, and therefore the material or soft-power gains of one of these three powers is made at the expense of one or two of the others., "America's military is nostalgic for great-power wars," 13 Mar. 2018 For all its powers of lawmaking, war making, budget drafting and diplomacy, the presidency also embodies the power of moral suasion. Leonard Pitts, Alaska Dispatch News, "Much of America repudiates the president," 22 Aug. 2017 The rapid initial response has often been held up as an example of how voluntary targets and moral suasion can be effective. Laura Colby,, "As Women Stall on U.K. Boards, $330 Billion Fund Takes a Stand," 19 May 2017 All SCOTUS has is moral suasion and institutional tradition, and we've all seen how far those go with this crowd. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Happy Monday. It's Chaos in America.," 5 June 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of suasion

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for suasion

Middle English, from Latin suasion-, suasio, from suadēre to urge, persuade — more at sweet

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about suasion

Statistics for suasion

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for suasion

The first known use of suasion was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

More from Merriam-Webster on suasion

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with suasion

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for suasion

Comments on suasion

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


recurring in steady succession

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

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!