v. ca·joled, ca·jol·ing, ca·joles
1. To persuade by flattery, gentle pleading, or insincere language: "He knew how she cajoled him into getting things for her and then would not even let him kiss her" (Theodore Dreiser).
2. To elicit or obtain by flattery, gentle pleading, or insincere language: The athlete cajoled a signing bonus out of the team's owner.
To use flattery, pleading, or insincere language in an attempt to persuade someone to do something: "She complained and he cajoled, bribing her with dollar bills for landing ten [figure skating] jumps in a row" (Joan Ryan).
[French cajoler, possibly blend of Old French cageoler, to chatter like a jay (from geai, jai, jay; see JAY2) and Old French gaioler, to lure into a cage (from gaiole, jaiole, cage; see JAIL).]
ca·joler·y (-jōlə-rē) n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.