be·​troth·​al | \ bi-ˈtrō-t͟həl How to pronounce betrothal (audio) , -ˈtrȯ-, -thəl How to pronounce betrothal (audio) , bē- \

Definition of betrothal

1 : the act of betrothing or fact of being betrothed
2 : a mutual promise or contract for a future marriage

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Synonyms & Antonyms for betrothal



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Examples of betrothal in a Sentence

They were both young at the time of their betrothal. the couple's betrothal lasted four years
Recent Examples on the Web Queued up in a nearby stairwell, waiting to emerge, were several of the couple's close friends and Hoover's family members, many of whom had traveled to Nashville just to celebrate the couple's betrothal. Nancy Kruh,, 25 May 2021 And there is a logic to them: Women are not the only people who get engaged, so why should the be the only ones who get to wear diamond rings as tokens of their betrothal? Carol Besler, Robb Report, 3 May 2021 Rumors started swirling about a possible betrothal after Addison shared a picture rocking what is undeniably an engagement ring on that finger. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, 15 Jan. 2021 Diana and her mother bought the ensemble, by a line called Cojana, off the rack at Harrods department store, but it would be depicted on countless souvenirs, from tea towels to piggy banks, commemorating the betrothal. Los Angeles Times, 15 Nov. 2020 At Wolsey’s behest, Henry breaks her betrothal to Holy Roman Emperor Charles and instead pairs her off with King Louis of France. Maureen Lee Lenker,, 26 Oct. 2020 Nevertheless, the betrothal, intended to remove her from the city of her scandalous past, was the making of Artemisia. Rebecca Mead, The New Yorker, 28 Sep. 2020 At the time of the 2012 betrothal, Wilkerson was 64 and Franklin was 70., 12 Apr. 2020 At the time of the 2012 betrothal, Wilkerson was 64 and Franklin was 70., 12 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'betrothal.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of betrothal

1683, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for betrothal

betroth + -al entry 2

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Time Traveler for betrothal

Time Traveler

The first known use of betrothal was in 1683

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Statistics for betrothal

Last Updated

5 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Betrothal.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for betrothal



English Language Learners Definition of betrothal

formal + old-fashioned
: the act of promising to marry someone
: an agreement that two people will be married in the future


be·​troth·​al | \ bi-ˈtrō-t͟həl How to pronounce betrothal (audio) , -ˈtrȯ- \

Kids Definition of betrothal

: an engagement to be married


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