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Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To urge by strong, often stirring argument, admonition, advice, or appeal: exhorted the troops to hold the line.
  • intransitive v. To make urgent appeal.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To urge; to advise earnestly.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Exhortation.
  • intransitive v. To deliver exhortation; to use words or arguments to incite to good deeds.
  • transitive v. To incite by words or advice; to animate or urge by arguments, as to a good deed or laudable conduct; to address exhortation to; to urge strongly; hence, to advise, warn, or caution.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To incite by words or advice; animate or urge by arguments to some act, or to some course of conduct or action; stir up.
  • To advise; admonish; caution.
  • Synonyms To incite, stimulate, encourage; appeal to, beg, enjoin, adjure.
  • To deliver exhortation; ecclesiastical, to use appeals or arguments to incite; practise public exhortation.
  • n. The act of exhorting; an exhortation.

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

  • v. spur on or encourage especially by cheers and shouts
  • v. force or impel in an indicated direction

Etymologies

Middle English exhorten, from Latin exhortārī : ex-, intensive pref.; see ex- + hortārī, to encourage; see gher-2 in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin exhortor ("encourage"), from ex- + hortor ("incite, spur") (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • He was using the phrase to exhort his compatriots to prepare for war, to engage in the struggle for freedom.

    American Sketches

  • Or it may be meant of the public reading of the scriptures; he must read and exhort, that is, read and expound, read and press what he read upon them; he must expound it both by way of exhortation and by way of doctrine; he must teach them both what to do and what to believe.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume VI (Acts to Revelation)

  • Where the Tories will "exhort" corporations to be "socially responsible", Labour can provide a tough framework for balancing companies 'desire for profits with the needs of ordinary people.

    The Cruddas manifesto

  • The word here rendered 'exhort' is found in Paul's writings as bearing special meanings, such as consoling, stimulating, encouraging, rebuking and others.

    Expositions of Holy Scripture: Romans Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

  • Americans were tired of hearing Obama "exhort" bankers and speculators to play nice as they collected their record bonuses for a heckuva job in 2009.

    Taylor Marsh

  • Mandelson announced that he and the chancellor, Alistair Darling, would be meeting bank chief executives on Thursday to "exhort" them to continue to lend to small firms at rates similar to those offered last year.

    Politics news, UK and world political comment and analysis | guardian.co.uk

  • In every major language, and in lots of less-spoken ones, heavily hit websites exhort the visitor to “Have fun learning English!” or to pick up English “the fun way.”

    The English Is Coming!

  • Exuberant and well-intentioned worship leaders exhort congregations to praise their way through pain; to know that when the praises go up, blessings invariably come down; to trust that God will either change an individual's circumstances or an individual within that circumstance.

    Andrew Wilkes: Tough Minds And Tender Hearts: An Open Letter To Young Clergy

  • It's almost as though they don't want activists to be able to exhort people to go and take action.

    Boing Boing

  • It's a great leader who can set aside a busy schedule to make time for children .... to exhort them to study and to set an example for busy people everywhere.

    Study hard, Obama tells kids on visit to community center

Comments

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  • I went to school with a girl called Janet Hort. She, uhh, did in fact change her name when she married.

    December 2, 2010

  • Peter exhorted his listeners to repent and respond to the gospel “that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19).

    December 2, 2010