Definition of tempt in English:
- Hospital staff were tempted to give a name to the the unknown child.
- Some clients were tempted to take out expensive loans to pay for private dental treatment.
- They were tempted to walk out halfway through the performance.
- Alluring aromas tempt your taste buds as the baking cools.
- On this island, the tasty cuisine tempts.
- The firm tempted drivers to the town by offering attractive packages.
Tempt goes back to Latin temptare ‘to test, try’, which is the sense in the expression tempt Providence. To be unwise enough to test Providence, or your luck, is to invite misfortune. In the Middle Ages temptation was particularly used in relation to the biblical story, in the Gospel of Matthew, of Jesus being tempted to sin by the Devil when he spent 40 days in the wilderness. Modern temptations are generally more trivial urges to indulge yourself. In 1892 Oscar Wilde wrote: ‘I can resist everything except temptation’ (Lady Windermere's Fan). Attempt (Late Middle English) is from the same root.
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