9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[woo] /wu/
verb (used with object)
to seek the favor, affection, or love of, especially with a view to marriage.
Synonyms: court, pursue, chase.
to seek to win:
to woo fame.
Synonyms: cultivate.
to invite (consequences, whether good or bad) by one's own action; court:
to woo one's own destruction.
to seek to persuade (a person, group, etc.), as to do something; solicit; importune.
verb (used without object)
to seek the affection or love of someone, usually a woman; court:
He was reminded of his youth when he went wooing.
to solicit favor or approval; entreat:
Further attempts to woo proved useless.
Origin of woo
before 1050; Middle English wowe, Old English wōgian
Related forms
wooer, noun
wooingly, adverb
unwooed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for woo
  • Company has campaign to woo back colleges, but some educators say it's too little, too late.
  • But it is also because real-world agents woo customers by offering refunds for cancelled trips and generally going the extra mile.
  • Flowers evolved many colors to woo and nectar, an additional lure.
  • Both parties woo the amorphous middle, to the dismay of those voters who want political contours to be drawn sharply.
  • But to build the new facilities they need, the two universities must woo large donors, too.
  • woo was strangled the night before her body was found.
  • Merger-arbitrage funds must also woo hungry investors.
  • In the world of birds some species adopt similar aerial displays to woo their mates.
  • The president faces crucial parliamentary elections next year and needs to woo voters.
  • It was set as low as it was to woo opponents of higher university fees, who feared they would put off poor students.
British Dictionary definitions for woo


verb woos, wooing, wooed
to seek the affection, favour, or love of (a woman) with a view to marriage
(transitive) to seek after zealously or hopefully: to woo fame
(transitive) to bring upon oneself (good or evil results) by one's own action
(transitive) to beg or importune (someone)
Derived Forms
wooer, noun
wooing, noun
Word Origin
Old English wōgian, of obscure origin
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 woo

Old English wogian, of uncertain origin and with no known cognates; perhaps related to woh, wog- "bent, inclined," as with affection.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for woo

wonky 2


Tedious and serious, esp anxious and over-studious in an academic situation: ''Jenny Cavilleri,'' answered Ray. ''Wonky music type''/ a class which I have long dismissed as hopelessly wonky

[1970s+ Students; fr wonk]

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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Idioms and Phrases with woo


see: pitch woo
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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