Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To calm in temper or feeling; soothe. See Synonyms at pacify.
  • transitive v. To lessen in intensity; temper.
  • transitive v. To reduce the rigidity of; soften.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To ease a burden; make less painful; to comfort
  • v. To appease, pacify, gain the good will of.
  • v. To soften; to make tender

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To soften; to make tender; to reduce the hardness, harshness, or asperity of; to qualify.
  • transitive v. To assuage, as pain or irritation, to appease, as excited feeling or passion; to pacify; to calm.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To soften; make soft or tender.
  • To soothe; mitigate; appease; pacify; calm or quiet.
  • To make less harsh; qualify; tone down; moderate; abate.
  • To induce or incline by making tender.
  • Synonyms and To mitigate, ease, moderate.
  • To soothe, quiet.
  • To become soft or tender.

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

  • v. make more temperate, acceptable, or suitable by adding something else; moderate
  • v. make less rigid or softer
  • v. cause to be more favorably inclined; gain the good will of

Etymologies

Middle English mollifien, from Old French mollifier, from Late Latin mollificāre : Latin mollis, soft; see mel-1 in Indo-European roots + -ficāre, -fy.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin molliō ("soften, calm"), from mollis ("soft"). (Wiktionary)

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