noun fe·al·ty \ˈfē(-ə)l-tē\

: loyalty to a person, group, etc.

plural fe·al·ties

Full Definition of FEALTY

a :  the fidelity of a vassal or feudal tenant to his lord
b :  the obligation of such fidelity
:  intense fidelity

Examples of FEALTY

  1. He swore fealty to the king.
  2. <as much as I wanted to back my friend up, my fealty to the truth was greater, and I could not lie for him>

Origin of FEALTY

Middle English feute, fealtye, from Anglo-French feelté, fealté, from Latin fidelitat-, fidelitas — more at fidelity
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of FEALTY

fidelity, allegiance, fealty, loyalty, devotion, piety mean faithfulness to something to which one is bound by pledge or duty. fidelity implies strict and continuing faithfulness to an obligation, trust, or duty <marital fidelity>. allegiance suggests an adherence like that of citizens to their country <pledging allegiance>. fealty implies a fidelity acknowledged by the individual and as compelling as a sworn vow <fealty to the truth>. loyalty implies a faithfulness that is steadfast in the face of any temptation to renounce, desert, or betray <valued the loyalty of his friends>. devotion stresses zeal and service amounting to self-dedication <a painter's devotion to her art>. piety stresses fidelity to obligations regarded as natural and fundamental <filial piety>.

Other History Terms

agonistic, carpetbagger, enceinte, fief, historiography, paladin


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