Word of the Day

Sunday, May 23, 1999


\uh-SWAYJ\ , verb;
To make milder or less severe; to reduce the intensity of; to ease; to relieve.
To appease; to satisfy.
To soothe or calm; to pacify.
His generosity toward a group of young graffiti writers was, perhaps, one way to assuage his guilt.
-- Phoebe Hoban, Basquiat: A Quick Killing in Art
Even with the requirement of lay review boards, the code will fail to assuage concerns of the church's most vocal critics that the unseemly methods of the past won't repeat themselves.
-- "Bishops take step in right direction", Chicago Sun-Times, November 15, 2002
If only she would come outside
and let us meet her--face to face;
perhaps our words could turn
her anger's tide, perhaps
we could, if not erase,
at least assuage her rage.
-- Euripides, Medea edited by David R. Slavitt and Palmer Bovie
In one final attempt to assuage fears, the agency claims that these audits will comprise only "1.1 percent of the total audit-related contacts planned for the year."
-- Daniel J. Pilla, "IRS prepares to intensify its kinder, gentler audits", Insight on the News, April 29, 2002
Assuage comes from Latin ad + suavis, "sweet".
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