Other forms: invoked; invoking; invokes

To invoke is to call up something such as a law, a higher power, or even a ghost. In court, you might invoke the Fifth Amendment (the right not to say something that will make you look bad) if you don't want to talk.

You can invoke all kinds of people or ideas, alive or dead: "She invokes the spirit of good writing when she proofreads her work." In a time of need, you might invoke a higher power. You could invoke Martin Luther King when talking about equal rights. You might even invoke the spirit of your dead cat at a séance. Just make sure you don't evoke (to bring on a strong emotional reaction) your dead cat; that would just be weird.

Definitions of invoke
  1. verb
    request earnestly (something from somebody); ask for aid or protection
    Invoke God in times of trouble”
    synonyms: appeal
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    appeal or request earnestly
    call on, turn
    have recourse to or make an appeal or request for help or information to
    beg, implore, pray
    call upon in supplication; entreat
    adjure, beseech, bid, conjure, entreat, press
    ask for or request earnestly
    type of:
    bespeak, call for, quest, request
    express the need or desire for; ask for
  2. verb
    summon into action or bring into existence, often as if by magic
    synonyms: arouse, bring up, call down, call forth, conjure, conjure up, evoke, put forward, raise, stir
    call forth, evoke, kick up, provoke
    evoke or provoke to appear or occur
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    anathemise, anathemize, bedamn, beshrew, curse, damn, imprecate, maledict
    wish harm upon; invoke evil upon
    give a benediction to
    anele, anoint, embrocate, inunct, oil
    administer an oil or ointment to ; often in a religious ceremony of blessing
    type of:
    create, make
    make or cause to be or to become
  3. verb
    cite as an authority; resort to
    “He invoked the law that would save him”
    “She invoked an ancient law”
    synonyms: appeal
    see moresee less
    type of:
    advert, bring up, cite, mention, name, refer
    make reference to




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DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘invoke'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
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