Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To cause to draw near or adhere by physical force: Magnetic poles are attracted to their opposites.
  • transitive v. To arouse or compel the interest, admiration, or attention of: We were attracted by the display of lights.
  • intransitive v. To possess or use the power of attraction.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To pull toward without touching
  • v. To arouse interest
  • v. To make someone feel sexually excited

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To draw to, or cause to tend to; esp. to cause to approach, adhere, or combine; or to cause to resist divulsion, separation, or decomposition.
  • transitive v. To draw by influence of a moral or emotional kind; to engage or fix, as the mind, attention, etc.; to invite or allure.
  • n. Attraction.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To draw in, to, or toward by direct mechanical agency or action of any kind.
  • To draw to or toward (itself) by inherent physical force; cause to gravitate toward or cohere with.
  • To draw by other than physical influence; invite or allure; win: as, to attract attention; to attract admirers.
  • Synonyms To entice, fascinate, charm.
  • To possess or exert the power of attraction: as, it is a property of matter to attract.
  • Figuratively, to be attractive or winning: as, his manners are calculated to attract.
  • n. Attraction; in plural, attractive qualities; charms.

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

  • v. direct toward itself or oneself by means of some psychological power or physical attributes
  • v. be attractive to
  • v. exert a force on (a body) causing it to approach or prevent it from moving away

Etymologies

Middle English attracten, from Latin attrahere, attract- : ad-, ad- + trahere, pull.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin attractus, past participle of attrahere ("to draw to, attract"), from ad ("to") + trahere ("to draw"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Try to make your title attract a certain audience.

    News Tom's Hardware US

  • The nature of the opposition they attract is itself proof that con-cons can make a real difference.

    J.H. Snider: A Historic Year for State Con-Cons

  • If there are multiple trailers for one movie out in theaters, attached to different movies, the possible audience it can attract is broadened as opposed to just in one trailer's case.

    34 High Resolution Photos from The Losers | /Film

  • By the way, how many Bostonians did Sarah Palin attract yesterday on the Boston Common?

    Former Wisconsin governor: I won't run for Senate

  • How communities are run and their priorities, how you live your life, what kinds of people you attract is the ultimate politics.

    Easter Lemming Liberal News

  • Yet it must again attract it precisely as that of which it is conscious as itself, only in a different form [Gestalt].

    'The Abyss of the Past': Psychoanalysis in Schelling's Ages of the World (1815)

  • Why plants would try to poison the honeybees they wish to attract is a scientific mystery.

    April 1st, 2007

  • Diplomatically, the United States can use the combination of “hard” and “soft” assets that constitute its unique strength to show a face that will again attract the world.

    slideshow-test

  • But ultimately what's demanded by the baby-boomer theatergoers that "Jersey Boys" seems destined to attract is a mimetically precise rendering of songs like "Big Girls Don't Cry," "Rag Doll" and "Walk Like a Man," composed by Mr. Gaudio with lyrics by Bob Crewe (portrayed here as a gay diva of a record producer by Peter Gregus).

    November 2005

  • The last customer on the planet I would ever wish to attract is the cheap bunghole who would want to deal with CCB.

    Banamex ATM Charges

Comments

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  • Railroad telegraphers' shorthand for "Show every attention". --US Railway Association, Standard Cipher Code, 1906.

    January 20, 2013