en·cour·age (ĕn-kûrĭj, -kŭr-)
tr.v. en·cour·aged, en·cour·ag·ing, en·cour·ag·es
1. To inspire with hope, courage, or confidence.
2. To give support to; foster: policies designed to encourage private investment.
3. To stimulate; spur: burning the field to encourage new plant growth.
[Middle English encouragen, from Old French encoragier : en-, causative pref.; see EN-1 + corage, courage; see COURAGE.]
Synonyms: encourage, cheer, embolden, hearten, inspire
These verbs mean to impart courage, inspiration, and resolution to: encouraged the patient not to give up hope; cheered the contestants on; was emboldened to sing for the guests; was heartened by the test results; were inspired by their initial success to take the next step.
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:
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