Definitions

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

  • n. The act of encouraging.
  • n. The state of being encouraged.
  • n. One that encourages.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The act of encouraging; incitement to action or to practice; as, the encouragement of youth in generosity.
  • n. That which serves to incite, support, promote or advance, as favor, countenance, reward etc.; incentive; increase of confidence; as, the fine arts find little encouragement among a rude people.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of encouraging; incitement to action or to practice.
  • n. That which serves to incite, support, promote, or advance, as favor, countenance, reward, etc.; incentive; increase of confidence.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of encouraging, or of giving courage or confidence of success; incitement to action or to perseverance; a promoting or advancing.
  • n. That which serves to excite courage or confidence; an encouraging fact or circumstance; an incentive or inducement; that which serves to promote or advance.

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

  • n. the act of giving hope or support to someone
  • n. the expression of approval and support
  • n. the feeling of being encouraged

Etymologies

From to encourage, from Old French encoragier, from en- ("make, put in") + corage ("courage"), from Vulgar Latin *coraticum, from cor ("heart, daring") + -ier, suffixed with -ment. (Wiktionary)

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