tempt·​er ˈtem(p)-tər How to pronounce tempter (audio)
: one that tempts or entices

Examples of tempter in a Sentence

there is no greater tempter to put off studying than my dog when he wants to play
Recent Examples on the Web Dre Kirkpatrick let his tempter get the best of him after Arizona had stopped Seattle on third down and during a confrontation with the Seahawks’ Metcalf, got hit with a costly 15-yard taunting penalty that changed the entire complexion of the situation. Bob McManaman, The Arizona Republic, 21 Nov. 2020 In Smith’s parable, art inscribes an intimate way of seeing—and Bowles, the tempter, leads writers to betray that vision for quick hits of affirmation. Katy Waldman, The New Yorker, 25 Feb. 2021 The next day, Sunday, July 21, 1940, while attending a service in Holy Trinity Church, Lewis imagined a book consisting of the correspondence between a senior devil, Screwtape, and his junior tempter, Wormwood. Joseph Loconte, National Review, 7 Dec. 2020 As the two debated, the Living Bread told the tempter that man lives by every word from the mouth of God. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, 3 Sep. 2020 The supreme tempter is Satan, who uses our weaknesses to lead us into sin. Eli Rosenberg, Washington Post, 17 Jan. 2018 But his tempter, a 70-year-old grifter even more desperate than Petty, is persuasive. Tom Nolan, WSJ, 21 July 2017 See More

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

Word History


Middle English tempter, temptour, in part from tempten "to tempt" + -er -er entry 2, in part borrowed from Anglo-French temptur, tempteour, going back to Late Latin temptātor "one who entices to sin (as an epithet for Satan)," going back to Latin, "one who makes an assault on," from temptāre "to feel, test, attempt, make an assault on, attack" + -tor, agent suffix — more at tempt

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of tempter was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near tempter

Cite this Entry

“Tempter.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tempter. Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

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