wooed; wooing; woos

transitive verb

: to sue for the affection of and usually marriage with : court
: to solicit or entreat especially with importunity
woo new customers
: to seek to gain or bring about

intransitive verb

: to court a woman
wooer noun

Examples of woo in a Sentence

The store had a sale in an effort to woo new customers. The company must find creative ways to woo new employees.
Recent Examples on the Web Hired in the mid-1950s as one of the first women to work in the field of automotive design, Vanderbilt designed custom Cadillacs intended to woo female clients, as well as patented safety innovations, blazing a trail at GM until her retirement in the late 1970s. Brett Berk, Robb Report, 14 Nov. 2023 Trump continues to woo DeSantis supporters with phone calls and invitations to events such as a GOP gala at Mar-a-Lago scheduled for Thursday. Lori Rozsa, Washington Post, 8 Nov. 2023 Last year, Washington was able to woo the overwhelming majority of those countries into opposing, or at least staying neutral toward, Russia’s Ukraine invasion. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, 2 Nov. 2023 And for more than half a year, Microsoft tried to woo Sony, with talks running off and on until late August, when the head of Microsoft’s gaming division, Phil Spencer, emailed a Sony executive, Jim Ryan, with a list of games that Microsoft would guarantee could remain on PlayStation. David McCabe, New York Times, 13 Oct. 2023 In a discussion largely about immigration and the Southern border, DeSantis struck a populist note blaming Washington for China’s successes in wooing Mexico and Cuba. WSJ, 28 Sep. 2023 On Wednesday, Rapp posted photos on Instagram of her and Tung onstage and provided a comp for reference showing Bieber wooing a girl during a concert over a decade ago. Carlos De Loera, Los Angeles Times, 2 Nov. 2023 Kennedy’s embrace of far-right talking points is expected to woo voters away from Trump—and that has angered previously friendly conservative news outlets. Tori Otten, The New Republic, 2 Nov. 2023 The only program that has been punished is the University of Miami women’s basketball program, where a booster posted evidence of his own efforts to woo two transfer students, which were facilitated by the head coach. Billy Witz, New York Times, 21 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'woo.' 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 wowen, from Old English wōgian

First Known Use

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of woo was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near woo

Cite this Entry

“Woo.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/woo. Accessed 4 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


: to try to gain the love of : court
: to seek to gain or bring about
political candidates wooing public support

More from Merriam-Webster on woo

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!