[pley-keyt, plak-eyt]

verb (used with object), pla·cat·ed, pla·cat·ing.

to appease or pacify, especially by concessions or conciliatory gestures: to placate an outraged citizenry.

Origin of placate

1670–80; < Latin plācātus past participle of plācāre to quiet, calm, appease, akin to placēre to please; see -ate1
Related formspla·cat·er, nounpla·ca·tion [pley-key-shuhn] /pleɪˈkeɪ ʃən/, nounun·pla·cat·ed, adjective

Synonyms for placate


[plak-eyt, -it]

noun Armor.

a piece of plate armor of the 15th to the 18th century protecting the lower part of the torso in front: used especially as a reinforcement over a breastplate.
Also placard, plac·cate, plackart.

Origin of placate

First recorded in 1625–35; apparently variant of placard Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for placate

Contemporary Examples of placate

Historical Examples of placate

  • In her efforts to placate him she had touched upon his sorest spot.

    The Harbor of Doubt

    Frank Williams

  • The offer of a peerage to Conroy showed that there was good reason to placate him.

    The Red Hand of Ulster

    George A. Birmingham

  • He began by what he called a course of conciliation—to placate the devil, as it were.


    Henry Peterson

  • Well would the King, to save his soul, placate and cosset his wife.

  • They were compromised with Stone and they could not placate Bobby.

    The Making of Bobby Burnit

    George Randolph Chester

British Dictionary definitions for placate



(tr) to pacify or appease
Derived Formsplacation, noun

Word Origin for placate

C17: from Latin plācāre; see placable
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 placate

1670s, a back-formation from placation or else from Latin placatus "soothed, quiet, gentle, calm, peaceful," past participle of placare "to calm, appease, quiet, soothe, assuage," related to placere "to please" (see please). Related: Placated; placating; placatingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper