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v. ad·vo·cat·ed, ad·vo·cat·ing, ad·vo·cates
To speak, plead, or argue in favor of: advocate a vegan diet. See Synonyms at support.
Usage Problem To act as an advocate: advocated for her patients; advocated for more stringent crime laws.
n. (-kĭt)
1. One that argues for a cause; a supporter or defender: an advocate of civil rights.
2. One that pleads in another's behalf; an intercessor: advocates for abused children and spouses.
3. A lawyer.

[From Middle English advocat, lawyer, from Old French advocat, from Latin advocātus, past participle of advocāre, to summon for counsel : ad-, ad- + vocāre, to call; see wekw- in Indo-European roots.]

ad′vo·ca′tion n.
ad′vo·ca′tive, ad·voc′a·to′ry (ăd-vŏk′ə-tôr′ē, ăd′və-kə-) adj.
ad′vo·ca′tor n.
Usage Note: The standard form of the verb advocate is transitive, meaning "endorse" or "argue for," as in The teacher advocated a new educational technique, which was accepted by 85 percent of the Usage Panel in our 2014 survey. Many readers balk when the verb is used to express the same meaning in an intransitive form with the preposition for: less than half (45 percent) of the Panel approved of The teacher advocated for a new educational technique. The intransitive is more acceptable, however, when the object of for is the beneficiary of the advocacy rather than the idea or action being advocated: two-thirds of the Panel approved The teacher advocated for her at-risk students. A careful writer will use transitive advocate in sentences indicating the idea or action, restricting the intransitive to sentences indicating the beneficiaries.


formal a person who advocates
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.advocator - a person who pleads for a cause or propounds an ideaadvocator - a person who pleads for a cause or propounds an idea
individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul - a human being; "there was too much for one person to do"
apologist, justifier, vindicator - a person who argues to defend or justify some policy or institution; "an apologist for capital punishment"
constitutionalist - an advocate of constitutional government
Darwinian - an advocate of Darwinism
populist, democrat - an advocate of democratic principles
federalist - an advocate of federalism
Gnostic - an advocate of Gnosticism
humanist, humanitarian - an advocate of the principles of humanism; someone concerned with the interests and welfare of humans
ideologist, ideologue - an advocate of some ideology
internationalist - an advocate of internationalism
irredentist, irridentist - an advocate of irredentism
isolationist - an advocate of isolationism in international affairs
Jansenist - an advocate of Jansenism
libertarian - an advocate of libertarianism
Maoist - an advocate of Maoism
Marxist - an advocate of Marxism
nationalist - an advocate of national independence of or a strong national government
neoclassicist - an advocate of neoclassicism
neutralist - an advocate of neutrality in international affairs
nullifier - an advocate of nullification; someone who believes that a state can resist federal laws
drumbeater, partisan, zealot - a fervent and even militant proponent of something
partitionist - an advocate of partitioning a country
Platonist - an advocate of Platonism
pro-lifer - an advocate of full legal protection for embryos and fetuses; someone opposed to legalized induced abortion
presenter, sponsor - an advocate who presents a person (as for an award or a degree or an introduction etc.)
protectionist - an advocate of protectionism
republican - an advocate of a republic (usually in opposition to a monarchy)
ritualist - an advocate of strict observance of ritualistic forms
ruralist - an advocate of rural living
secessionist - an advocate of secessionism
secularist - an advocate of secularism; someone who believes that religion should be excluded from government and education
separationist, separatist - an advocate of secession or separation from a larger group (such as an established church or a national union)
spokesperson, representative, interpreter, voice - an advocate who represents someone else's policy or purpose; "the meeting was attended by spokespersons for all the major organs of government"
suffragist - an advocate of the extension of voting rights (especially to women)
admirer, booster, protagonist, supporter, champion, friend - a person who backs a politician or a team etc.; "all their supporters came out for the game"; "they are friends of the library"
supremacist - a person who advocates the supremacy of some particular group or race over all others
teleologist - advocate of teleology
Thatcherite - an advocate of Thatcherism
unilateralist - an advocate of unilateralism
References in periodicals archive ?
Another woman in her thirties said that Al-Deeb is an advocator of labour rights and syndicate work.
Xinli Qi, the general advocator of National Association of Exit and Extry Industry took the initiative in speaking up and established WinFund Group in partnership with dozens of the most influential agents in China.
In a press statement, the envoy said that Kuwait also was a victim of war during the 1990 Iraqi invasion and was a victim of the detrimental effects of weapons on human health and environment; hence, Kuwait has become an avid advocator of peace and stability in the world.
It is to be mentioned here that Sher Shah is social worker and an advocator of restoration of durable peace in the area.
Nouakchott, Sha'ban 05, 1436, May 23, 2015, SPA -- President Mohammed Wild Abdulaziz of Mauritania made a minor reshuffle in the government of Premier Yahya Wild Hadmin, appointing Advocator Ibrahim Wild Dada as Justice Minister, replacing Sidi Wild Al-Zain who was moved to the post of Minister of Housing, Construction and Land Reclamation.
Nowadays, the enemies are attributing different kinds of violence to Islam, while Islam is the main advocator of science, peace and moderation in the international arenas," he added.
Laboucan was a fierce advocator for strongly educated Aboriginal youth.
As a proud advocator of freedom of speech and facilitator of community cohesion, I realise the possible negative consequences of his action.
Elizabeth Miller, Vice President of Sales, has been a fundamental advocator of the benefits and features of the new system.
Atiya Jaha-Rashidi, RN Volunteer, nurse of close to 13 years, and former Public Health Advocator and Educator, Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, leads a Barnabas Health working committee of Facility Champions and their teams that meet weekly.
The digital rights advocator gave Apple a perfect mark of six stars in its effort to protect user data and policies towards government data requests.
It's an advocacy song, of a kind that only the nation's most enduring advocator could offer.