Synonym Chooser

How does the verb wheedle differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of wheedle are blandish, cajole, coax, and soft-soap. While all these words mean "to influence or persuade by pleasing words or actions," 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

When could blandish be used to replace wheedle?

Although the words blandish and wheedle have much in common, blandish implies a more open desire to win a person over by effusive praise and affectionate actions.

legislators blandished with promises of support

In what contexts can cajole take the place of wheedle?

While the synonyms cajole and wheedle are close in meaning, 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 can coax be used instead of wheedle?

In some situations, the words coax and wheedle are roughly equivalent. However, coax implies gentle and persistent words or actions employed to produce a desired effect.

coaxed the cat out of the tree

When is soft-soap a more appropriate choice than wheedle?

The synonyms soft-soap and wheedle are sometimes interchangeable, but soft-soap refers to using smooth and somewhat insincere talk usually for personal gain.

politicians soft-soaping eligible voters

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Cite this Entry

“Wheedle.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/wheedle. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

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