- to call for with earnest desire; make supplication or pray for: to invoke God's mercy.
- to call on (a deity, Muse, etc.), as in prayer or supplication.
- to declare to be binding or in effect: to invoke the law; to invoke a veto.
- to appeal to, as for confirmation.
- to petition or call on for help or aid.
- to call forth or upon (a spirit) by incantation.
- to cause, call forth, or bring about.
Origin of invoke
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for invoke
Before you invoke images of a nation enjoying more indolence than industry, there is an uncomfortable statistic to digest.Obama’s Extravagant Summer Break? More Like, America’s Vacation-Deficit Disorder
August 10, 2014
Alas, I must invoke Marx, because it is a question of limited resources.Reading Prison Novels In Prison
May 24, 2014
Do I, a law professor, get to invoke the privilege when I write a piece for The Daily Beast?
Does a personal blogger writing on Facebook get to invoke the privilege?
The conservative line on Bridgegate is to invoke Benghazi or the IRS scandal, but that doesn't make any sense.Changing the Subject Won't Work
January 13, 2014
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.Imogen
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
Do you know that it is against your father and your father's brother that you invoke God's vengeance?The Tavern Knight
- 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
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
Word Origin and History for invoke
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper