verb (used with object), in·voked, in·vok·ing.

Origin of invoke

1480–90; < Latin invocāre, equivalent to in- in-2 + vocāre to call, akin to vōx voice
Related formsin·vo·ca·ble, adjectivein·vok·er, nounre·in·voke, verb (used with object), re·in·voked, re·in·vok·ing.un·in·vo·ca·ble, adjectiveun·in·voked, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for invoke

Contemporary Examples of invoke

Historical Examples of invoke

  • Then she began busily to invoke the protection of all the saints in the calendar.

    Gomez Arias

    Joaqun Telesforo de Trueba y Coso

  • Invoke not the unhallowed spirits of the abyss; invoke the spotless synod of the Gods.


    William Godwin

  • We have the law with us, and your conduct will lead us to invoke it.

    Cy Whittaker's Place

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • "A law that will hang you if you invoke it," she cut in quickly.

    Mistress Wilding

    Rafael Sabatini

  • Do you know that it is against your father and your father's brother that you invoke God's vengeance?

    The Tavern Knight

    Rafael Sabatini

British Dictionary definitions for invoke


verb (tr)

to call upon (an agent, esp God or another deity) for help, inspiration, etc
to put (a law, penalty, etc) into usethe union invoked the dispute procedure
to appeal to (an outside agent or authority) for confirmation, corroboration, etc
to implore or beg (help, etc)
to summon (a spirit, demon, etc); conjure up
Derived Formsinvocable, adjectiveinvoker, noun

Word Origin for invoke

C15: from Latin invocāre to call upon, appeal to, from vocāre to call


Invoke is sometimes wrongly used where evoke is meant: this proposal evoked (not invoked) a strong reaction
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 invoke

late 15c., from Middle French envoquer (12c.), from Latin invocare "call upon, implore," from in- "upon" (see in- (2)) + vocare "to call," related to vox (genitive vocis) "voice" (see voice (n.)). Related: Invoked; invoking.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper