American English

Definition of encourage verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they encourage
    he / she / it encourages
    past simple encouraged
    -ing form encouraging
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  1. 1to give someone support, courage, or hope encourage somebody in something My parents have always encouraged me in my choice of career. encourage somebody We were greatly encouraged by the positive response of the public.
  2. 2encourage somebody to do something encourage doing something to persuade someone to do something by making it easier for them and making them believe it is a good thing to do Banks actively encourage people to borrow money.
  3. 3to make something more likely to happen or develop encourage something (in somebody/something) They claim that some computer games encourage violent behavior in young children. encourage somebody to do something Music and lighting are used to encourage shoppers to buy more. encourage doing something Technology encourages multitasking. opposite discourage
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adjective [not usually before noun] This month's unemployment figures are not very encouraging. You could try being a little more encouraging!
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adverb to smile encouragingly The attendance was encouragingly high.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: encourage