See more synonyms for woo on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to seek the favor, affection, or love of, especially with a view to marriage.
  2. to seek to win: to woo fame.
  3. to invite (consequences, whether good or bad) by one's own action; court: to woo one's own destruction.
  4. to seek to persuade (a person, group, etc.), as to do something; solicit; importune.
verb (used without object)
  1. to seek the affection or love of someone, usually a woman; court: He was reminded of his youth when he went wooing.
  2. to solicit favor or approval; entreat: Further attempts to woo proved useless.

Origin of woo

before 1050; Middle English wowe, Old English wōgian
Related formswoo·er, nounwoo·ing·ly, adverbun·wooed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wooed

Contemporary Examples of wooed

Historical Examples of wooed

  • Then came Joshua Bute of Chicago, and when wooed she accepted and married him.

    Galusha the Magnificent

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • You had wooed and slighted me, yet you had made me love you, and if you were not for me I swore you should be for no other.

  • You had learnt who I was, and you thought that you had learnt why I wooed you.

  • Was it disgraceful that she had wooed and not waited to be won?

    The Manxman

    Hall Caine

  • He loved her, he wooed and won her, and at last he married her, but secretly.

    Sir Henry Morgan, Buccaneer

    Cyrus Townsend Brady

British Dictionary definitions for wooed


verb woos, wooing or wooed
  1. to seek the affection, favour, or love of (a woman) with a view to marriage
  2. (tr) to seek after zealously or hopefullyto woo fame
  3. (tr) to bring upon oneself (good or evil results) by one's own action
  4. (tr) to beg or importune (someone)
Derived Formswooer, nounwooing, noun

Word Origin for woo

Old English wōgian, of obscure 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 wooed



Old English wogian, of uncertain origin and with no known cognates; perhaps related to woh, wog- "bent, inclined," as with affection.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with wooed


see pitch woo.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.