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verb (used with or without object), ca·joled, ca·jol·ing.
  1. to persuade by flattery or promises; wheedle; coax.
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Origin of cajole

1635–45; < French cajoler to cajole or chatter like a jaybird, apparently derivative of *cajole birdcage (< Late Latin caveola < Latin cave(a) cage + -ola -ole1) + -er infinitive suffix
Related formsca·jole·ment, nounca·jol·er, nounca·jol·ing·ly, adverbun·ca·jol·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for cajoling


  1. to persuade (someone) by flattery or pleasing talk to do what one wants; wheedle; coax
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Derived Formscajolement, nouncajoler, nouncajolery, nouncajolingly, adverb

Word Origin

C17: from French cajoler to coax, of uncertain origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cajoling



1640s, from French cajoler "to cajole, wheedle, coax," perhaps a blend of Middle French cageoler "to chatter like a jay" (16c., from gajole, southern diminutive of geai "jay;" see jay (n.)), and Old French gaioler "to cage, entice into a cage" (see jail (n.)). Related: Cajoled; cajoling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper