\ ˈwü How to pronounce woo (audio) \
wooed; wooing; woos

Definition of woo

transitive verb

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

intransitive verb

: to court a woman

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Other Words from woo

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

In a story arc that adds aching poignancy, Donna Migliaccio packs humor and solidity into landlady Fräulein Schneider, who is wooed by Herr Schultz, a gentle Jewish fruit merchant. Celia Wren, Washington Post, "In this Kit Kat Klub, there’s a little less sleaze but just enough sizzle," 4 Sep. 2019 Johnson wooed Conservatives by promising to succeed where May had failed and lead the U.K. out of the EU — with or without a divorce deal. Danica Kirka, Twin Cities, "Boris Johnson chosen as new UK leader, now faces Brexit test," 23 July 2019 In addition to cultivating Mr. Trump and the Republican Party, Mr. Netanyahu has wooed nationalist and populist governments in Hungary, Austria, Brazil and elsewhere that have defended Israel in international forums. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, "The New Anti-Semitism," 12 July 2019 AltSchool wooed parents and tech investors with its vision to bring the classroom into the digital age. Melia Russell, SFChronicle.com, "AltSchool’s out: Zuckerberg-backed startup that tried to rethink education calls it quits," 28 June 2019 But using the Spanish language to woo voters is a double-edged sword: Advocates looking for clues about how candidates would respond to issues facing Latinos in the United States saw the gestures as promising and sincere. Washington Post, "Democrats’ use of Spanish in debate evokes praise, eye rolls," 27 June 2019 Or read our coverage of how his firm is trying to win the race to build technology that could make some of its own business obsolete, woo tech startups, and get into the credit card business with Apple. Shirin Ghaffary, Vox, "One of the world’s top bankers knows tech is key to the future of his company," 11 June 2019 Binns said relatives alerted police to concerns that Reed was being scammed by someone using a false identity to woo her. Jonathan Drew, Fox News, "Police: Online love scam leads investigators to killing plot," 14 Aug. 2018 Binns said relatives alerted police to concerns that Reed was being scammed by someone using a false identity to woo her. Jonathan Drew, The Seattle Times, "Police: Online love scam leads investigators to killing plot," 14 Aug. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for woo

Middle English wowen, from Old English wōgian

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Dictionary Entries near woo







Wood's alloy

Statistics for woo

Last Updated

7 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for woo

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

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More Definitions for woo



English Language Learners Definition of woo

old-fashioned : to try to make (someone) love you : to try to have a romantic relationship with (someone)
: to try to attract (someone, such as a customer, voter, worker, etc.) : to attempt to persuade (someone) to buy something from you, vote for you, work for you, etc.


\ ˈwü How to pronounce woo (audio) \
wooed; wooing

Kids Definition of woo

1 : to try to gain the love of
2 : to try to gain The candidates wooed votes.

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More from Merriam-Webster on woo

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with woo

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for woo

Spanish Central: Translation of woo

Nglish: Translation of woo for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of woo for Arabic Speakers

Comments on woo

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


to wander slowly or to speak indistinctly

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