Printable Version
Pronunciation: in-vay-gêl Hear it!

Part of Speech: Verb, transitive

Meaning: 1. Cajole or lure into doing something, to persuade using questionable tactics. 2. To obtain by cajoling or persuasion based on questionable tactics.

Notes: Today's word contains a superfluous "i" in its midst that is easy to overlook when spelling this word. This is the only caveat we have for inveigle. The person who inveigles is an inveigler up to inveiglement. There is not much else to say about this word.

In Play: From the Meaning above, we see that the sense of this word roves from inveigling people to inveigling things from people. Inveigling people goes something like this: "I don't know how I allowed May O'Naise to inveigle me into preparing a seven-course meal for her, but I'll never cook more than five courses for her again!" Inveigling things is slightly different: "I don't know how I let May O'Naise inveigle a seven-course meal from me but I'll never cook more than five courses for her again!" Either approach is fine.

Word History: Today's Good Word entered Middle English (1066-1485) as envegle "to win over by deceit, seduce", an alteration of Old French aveugler "to blind". The French verb is based on the adjective aveugle "blind, sightless", a descendant of Vulgar (Street) Latin *aboculus "blind" from Latin Latin ab "away from" + oculus "eye". It is probably a loan-translation of Gaulish exsops "blind" made up of exs "from" + ops "eye". Latin oculus turns up in several borrowed English words, such as ocular and the well-known two-eyed binoculars. In Old Norse the same root emerged as auga "eye". English borrowed the Old Norse vindauga "wind-eye" and honed it over the years to the window it is today.

Dr. Goodword,

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