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[kohks] /koʊks/
verb (used with object)
to attempt to influence by gentle persuasion, flattery, etc.; cajole:
He coaxed her to sing, but she refused.
to obtain by coaxing:
We coaxed the secret from him.
to manipulate to a desired end by adroit handling or persistent effort:
He coaxed the large chair through the door.
  1. to fondle.
  2. to fool; deceive.
verb (used without object)
to use gentle persuasion.
Origin of coax1
1580-90; v. use of cokes fool (now obsolete), perhaps variant of coxcomb
Related forms
coaxer, noun
coaxingly, adverb
half-coaxing, adjective
half-coaxingly, adverb
uncoaxed, adjective
uncoaxing, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for coaxing
  • Numerous studies have so far reported success at coaxing adult stem cells into various cell types under different conditions.
  • The team showed great patience in coaxing the dormant microbe back to life.
  • She had almost got a second supply out of me the other day, with her coaxing ways.
  • Anyhow they led their chicks to this point, and with infinite coaxing and encouragement got them to tumble themselves off.
  • Others picture coaxing human embryonic stem cells, which can form any cell or tissue in the body, into forming eggs.
  • Researchers start by coaxing cells in culture to activate bitter-taste receptors.
  • coaxing a koala out of a tree is harder than one would think, for koalas are surprisingly quick and stubborn.
  • There's going to be coaxing involved on the part of the teacher.
  • With the right coaxing, some critters will even make proteins from the cryptic recipes encoded by each round molecule.
  • Genetic engineering is all about coaxing cells into producing proteins that they would not ordinarily make.
British Dictionary definitions for coaxing


to seek to manipulate or persuade (someone) by tenderness, flattery, pleading, etc
(transitive) to obtain by persistent coaxing
(transitive) to work on or tend (something) carefully and patiently so as to make it function as one desires: he coaxed the engine into starting
(transitive) (obsolete) to caress
(transitive) (obsolete) to deceive
Derived Forms
coaxer, noun
coaxingly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: verb formed from obsolete noun cokes fool, of unknown origin


short for coaxial cable
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
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Word Origin and History for coaxing



1580s, originally in slang phrase to make a coax of, from earlier noun coax, cox, cokes "a fool, ninny, simpleton" (1560s); modern spelling is 1706. Origin obscure, perhaps related to cock (n.1). Related: Coaxed; coaxing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for coaxing


coaxial cable
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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