compelling


compelling
compelling, compulsive
Both words involve a sense of strong urging and are derived from Latin compellere meaning ‘to drive on’. An activity or habit that is compulsive affects an individual in a way they cannot control (a near synonym is addictive):

• Franklin was…a compulsive composer of lists and instructions —New York Metro, 2004.

Compelling is used of arguments and information that is convincing or effective (the synonym here is persuasive). So when a newspaper television review described a historical programme as being on the receiving end of the BBC's compulsive docudrama treatment, the word needed was compelling, since the programme was presumably well-presented and persuasive rather than addictive.

Modern English usage. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • compelling — adj: that compels: tending to demand action or to convince a compelling need for disclosure a compelling argument Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. compelling …   Law dictionary

  • compelling — [kəm pel′iŋ] adj. 1. that compels 2. irresistibly or keenly interesting, attractive, etc.; captivating [a compelling drama] compellingly adv …   English World dictionary

  • compelling — c.1600, prp. adj. from COMPEL (Cf. compel). Meaning irresistible is from 1901 …   Etymology dictionary

  • compelling — telling, convincing, cogent, sound, *valid …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • compelling — ► ADJECTIVE ▪ powerfully evoking attention or admiration. DERIVATIVES compellingly adverb …   English terms dictionary

  • compelling — com|pel|ling [kəmˈpelıŋ] adj 1.) compelling reason/argument/case etc an argument etc that makes you feel certain that something is true or that you must do something about it ▪ Lucy had no compelling reason to go into town. ▪ The court was… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • compelling — [[t]kəmpe̱lɪŋ[/t]] 1) ADJ GRADED: usu ADJ n A compelling argument or reason is one that convinces you that something is true or that something should be done. Factual and forensic evidence makes a suicide verdict the most compelling answer to the …   English dictionary

  • compelling — adj. 1 holding your attention VERBS ▪ be ▪ become ▪ find sth ADVERB ▪ very ▪ utterly …   Collocations dictionary

  • compelling — adjective Date: 1606 that compels: as a. forceful < a compelling personality > b. demanding attention < for compelling reasons > c. convincing < no compelling evidence > • compellingly …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • compelling — /keuhm pel ing/, adj. 1. tending to compel; overpowering: compelling reasons. 2. having a powerful and irresistible effect; requiring acute admiration, attention, or respect: a man of compelling integrity; a compelling drama. [1490 1500; COMPEL + …   Universalium