Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

appeal - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



Thesaurus diagram

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb [intransitive]     appeal pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participleappealing
past tenseappealed
past participleappealed
  1. 1
    to make an urgent request for people to give you something that you need such as help, money, or information
    appeal (to someone) for something:

    They’re appealing to local businesses for sponsorship money.

    1. a.
      to ask people to do something or to behave in a particular way, especially in a difficult situation
      appeal for calm/unity/restraint:

      As the crisis grew worse, local community leaders appealed for unity.

      appeal to someone to do something:

      She appealed to her former husband to return their baby son.

  2. 2
    if something appeals to you, you like it or want it
    appeal to:

    The show’s direct approach will appeal to children.

  3. 3
    to formally ask a court of law or similar authority to change its decision
    appeal against:

    Green’s family say they will appeal against the verdict.

    leave to appeal (=the right to appeal):

    The Board refused to grant them leave to appeal.

  4. 4
    to try to get someone to do or accept something by making them think it is a sensible or fair thing to do
    appeal to:

    Max appealed to her good sense to make her change her mind.

quiz invitation
  • Facebook
  • Twitter


a description of an economic or political situation based on analysis of information at the present time

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


an unregulated form of capitalism that features financial deregulation, privatisation and low tax for high earners

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play