Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To force to act or think in a certain way by use of pressure, threats, or intimidation; compel.
  • transitive v. To dominate, restrain, or control forcibly: coerced the strikers into compliance. See Synonyms at force.
  • transitive v. To bring about by force or threat: efforts to coerce agreement.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To restrain by force, especially by law or authority; to repress; to curb.
  • v. to use force, threat, fraud, or intimidation in attempt to compel one to act against his will.
  • v. to force an attribute, normally of a data type, to take on the attribute of another data type.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To restrain by force, especially by law or authority; to repress; to curb.
  • transitive v. To compel or constrain to any action.
  • transitive v. To compel or enforce.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To restrain or constrain by force, as by the force of law or authority; especially, compel to compliance; constrain to obedience or submission in a vigorous or forcible manner.
  • To deprive of by force; restrain of.
  • To enforce; compel by forcible action: as, to coerce obedience.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. to cause to do through pressure or necessity, by physical, moral or intellectual means :

Etymologies

Latin coercēre, to control, restrain : co-, co- + arcēre, to enclose, confine.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin coercere ("to surround, encompass, restrain, control, curb"), from co- ("together") + arcere ("to inclose, confine, keep off"); see arcade, arcane, ark. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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