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[dos-uh l; British doh-sahyl] /ˈdɒs əl; British ˈdoʊ saɪl/
easily managed or handled; tractable:
a docile horse.
readily trained or taught; teachable.
Origin of docile
1475-85; < Latin docilis readily taught, equivalent to doc(ēre) to teach + -ilis -ile
Related forms
docilely, adverb
[do-sil-i-tee, doh-] /dɒˈsɪl ɪ ti, doʊ-/ (Show IPA),
1. manageable, malleable; obedient. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for docilely
Historical Examples
  • With a growing antagonism, I asked myself why I had so docilely followed her request.

    The Wasted Generation Owen Johnson
  • He allowed himself to be docilely herded on to the edge of the pit.

  • docilely Catherine whispered it, and Jeanne laughed merrily.

    The Path of the King John Buchan
  • After supper he was docilely ready to fiddle to the men's dancing.

    The Blazed Trail Stewart Edward White
  • Dylara, her once spotless tunic grimy and torn, accompanied him docilely now, too weary to resist.

    Warrior of the Dawn Howard Carleton Browne
  • He'd follow English docilely and sit down as he was ordered.

    Winner Take All Larry Evans
  • She followed Corinne docilely up the broad flight into the west wing of the great building.

    A Little Miss Nobody Amy Bell Marlowe
  • docilely Christopher followed him into the street where amid surging crowds they hailed the bus and began rolling up the avenue.

  • Then she stood up, docilely, and walked toward the stairs with a heavy, stumbling step.

    Fanny Herself Edna Ferber
  • The child did not reply, but docilely allowed herself to be led to her seat.

British Dictionary definitions for docilely


easy to manage, control, or discipline; submissive
(rare) ready to learn; easy to teach
Derived Forms
docilely, adverb
docility (dəʊˈsɪlɪtɪ) noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin docilis easily taught, from docēre to teach
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 docilely



late 15c., "easily taught," from Italian or French docile, from Latin docilis "easily taught," from docere "teach" (see doctor). Sense of "obedient, submissive" first recorded 1774.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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