Definitions

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

  • adj. Warm and sincere; friendly: a cordial greeting; cordial relations. See Synonyms at gracious.
  • adj. Strongly felt; fervent: a cordial abhorrence of waste.
  • adj. Serving to invigorate; stimulating.
  • n. A stimulant; a tonic.
  • n. A liqueur.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Hearty; sincere; warm; affectionate.
  • adj. Said of someone radiating warmth and friendliness; genial.
  • adj. Tending to revive, cheer, or invigorate; giving strength or spirits.
  • n. A concentrated noncarbonated soft drink which is diluted with water before drinking.
  • n. A pleasant-tasting medicine.
  • n. A liqueur prepared using the infusion process.
  • n. A candy (or bonbon) usually made of milk chocolate, filled with small fruits (often maraschino cherries) and syrup or fondant.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Proceeding from the heart.
  • adj. Hearty; sincere; warm; affectionate.
  • adj. Tending to revive, cheer, or invigorate; giving strength or spirits.
  • n. Anything that comforts, gladdens, and exhilarates.
  • n. Any invigorating and stimulating preparation.
  • n. Aromatized and sweetened spirit, used as a beverage; a liqueur.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Of or pertaining to the heart.
  • Proceeding from the heart or from kindly and earnest feeling; exhibiting kindly feeling or warmth of heart; hearty; sincere; warmly friendly; affectionate.
  • Reviving the spirits; cheering; invigorating; imparting strength or cheerfulness.
  • Synonyms Sincere, etc. See hearty.
  • n. Something that invigorates, comforts, gladdens, or exhilarates.
  • n. A medicine or draught which increases the action of the heart and stimulates the circulation; a warm stomachic; any medicine which increases strength, dispels languor, and promotes cheerfulness.
  • n. A sweet and aromatic liquor.

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

  • adj. diffusing warmth and friendliness
  • adj. sincerely or intensely felt
  • adj. politely warm and friendly
  • n. strong highly flavored sweet liquor usually drunk after a meal

Etymologies

Middle English, of the heart, from Medieval Latin cordiālis, from Latin cor, cord-, heart; see kerd- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle French cordial ("stimulating the heart"), from Late Latin cordialis, from cor. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Hailemariam made clear, however, that the report would not affect what he called the "cordial relationship" between Addis Ababa and Washington.

    Ethiopia Declines to Respond to US Rights Charges

  • Company spokesman Allen Cohen on Friday said the ads will be removed "in an expeditious manner" after what he described as a cordial conversation late Thursday with White House counsel Kendall Burman, who requested their prompt removal.

    WIBW - HomePage - Headlines

  • Another defendant, Alphaville Design Inc., of Fremont, Calif., says it is in "cordial talks" with Herman Miller.

    In Design, Chair and Chair Alike

  • Those discussions, which took place between Sen. Jon Kyl R-Ariz. and top economic adviser Gene Sperling, were described as cordial compared to the earlier ones.

    Obama Warns Cantor As Debt Talks Stall: 'Don't Call My Bluff'

  • “Time is always a great healer,” Vernon Jordan, a longtime friend of the Clintons, said in an interview as he left the event, which he described as a cordial affair.

    Obama-Clinton Meeting Fest - The Caucus Blog - NYTimes.com

  • Let's face it - any woman who is, shall we say, less than cordial, is just an embarrassment and obviously in need of a good seeing to.

    'This is the worst.'

  • Its restraint demonstrates its great care to avoid such a major conflict with the Chinese people, linked over many generations in cordial friendship with the American people.

    American Foreign Policy

  • "Glad to see you and welcome you to Enson Hall," said Ellis in cordial greeting, his hospitable nature overcoming his repugnance for this man of unsavory reputation.

    Hagar's Daughter: A Story of Southern Caste Prejudice

  • These all bent the knee, kissed the hand of the queen, and saluted the rest of us with proper form; after which the conversation became general, and some most pleasant moments passed in cordial greetings with these our friends.

    Hawaii's Story, by Hawaii's Queen

  • Nuclear envoys from the Koreas met last month on the sidelines of a regional security summit for what were described as cordial talks.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

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Comments

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  • We all remember Anne setting Diana drunk on what she thought was raspberry cordial.

    April 17, 2009

  • "Dr. Betterson's Cordial, to be taken in the Small-Pox, when Wine alone is not sufficient to keep up the Spirits.

    Take Compound Wormwood Water, Aqua Mirabilis, each Three Ounces, Tincture of Saffron, an Ounce and half; Oil of Nutmegs, Three Drops; Oil of Cinnamon, Two Drops; Sugar of Pearl, as much as will suffice; mix for a Julep: Of which take Two or Three Spoonfuls under Faintness, often in a Day.

    Note
    , This Method has been tried with vast Success in Wiltshire, and in the Neighbourhood of Malmsbury, from the Direction of this Letter."
    Virginia Gazette, Jan. 7, 1737

    Hey, at least it isn't as poisonous as tar-water.

    January 29, 2009

  • Interesting, Evin. So does this mean the basic idea behind "cordial" as an alcoholic beverage is that it is good for the heart?

    August 25, 2008

  • Archaically, the word also referred to the heart. Someone asked me to use it in a sentence that way:

    "The witch doctor made a grievous error in selected an herbal remedy for the chieftan; he had perscribed root of soulsbane thinking the ailment was renal, but it was actually cordial."

    August 25, 2008

  • mm.. lime cordial.

    May 28, 2008