Synonym Chooser

How does the verb coax differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of coax are blandish, cajole, soft-soap, and wheedle. While all these words mean "to influence or persuade by pleasing words or actions," coax implies gentle and persistent words or actions employed to produce a desired effect.

coaxed the cat out of the tree

When could blandish be used to replace coax?

The meanings of blandish and coax largely overlap; however, blandish implies a more open desire to win a person over by effusive praise and affectionate actions.

legislators blandished with promises of support

Where would cajole be a reasonable alternative to coax?

In some situations, the words cajole and coax are roughly equivalent. However, cajole suggests the deliberate use of flattery to persuade in the face of reluctance or reasonable objections.

cajoled him into cheating on the final exam

When is it sensible to use soft-soap instead of coax?

Although the words soft-soap and coax have much in common, soft-soap refers to using smooth and somewhat insincere talk usually for personal gain.

politicians soft-soaping eligible voters

In what contexts can wheedle take the place of coax?

The words wheedle and coax are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, wheedle suggests more strongly than cajole the use of seductive appeal or artful words in persuading.

hucksters wheedling her life's savings out of her


Thesaurus Entries Near coax

Cite this Entry

“Coax.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

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