- The definition of admonish means to let someone know that you are not happy with his or her actions or to scold a person.
To reprimand a child who is behaving badly is an example of admonish.
A father admonishes his child.
- to caution against specific faults; warn
- to reprove mildly
- to urge or exhort
- to inform or remind, by way of a warning
Origin of admonishMiddle English amonesten ; from Old French amonester ; from Medieval Latin an unverified form admonestare, ultimately ; from Classical Latin admonere ; from ad-, to + monere, to warn
transitive verbad·mon·ished, ad·mon·ish·ing, ad·mon·ish·es
- a. To counsel (another) against something to be avoided or warn (that something is dangerous): “[Another competitor in the race] admonished him on the dangers of going out too fast” (Neal Bascomb). “Magazine articles &ellipsis; admonished that women's financial independence was driving a wedge between husband and wife” (Lillian Faderman).b. To urge or exhort (someone to do something): “Writers like Emerson and Thoreau &ellipsis; admonished us to develop ourselves according to nature” (E.D. Hirsch).c. To remind (someone) of something forgotten or disregarded, as an obligation or a responsibility.
- To reprove gently but earnestly: “Lincoln pursued his interests in defiance of established norms. Far from being praised, he was consistently admonished” (Joshua Wolf Shenk).
Origin of admonishMiddle English amonishen, admonishen, alteration of amonesten, from Old French amonester, admonester, from Vulgar Latin *admonestāre, from Latin admonēre : ad-, ad- + monēre, to warn; see men-1 in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present admonishes, present participle admonishing, simple past and past participle admonished)