bondage

noun
bond·age | \ˈbän-dij \

Definition of bondage 

1 : the tenure or service of a villein, serf, or slave

2 : a state of being bound usually by compulsion (as of law or mastery): such as

a : captivity, serfdom

b : servitude or subjugation to a controlling person or force young people in bondage to drugs

3 : sadomasochistic sexual practices involving the physical restraint of one partner

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Synonyms & Antonyms for bondage

Synonyms

enslavement, servility, servitude, slavery, thrall, thralldom (or thraldom), yoke

Antonyms

freedom, liberty

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Examples of bondage in a Sentence

a population held in bondage the Civil War ended over 200 years of bondage for black Africans in America

Recent Examples on the Web

Curry, who like Markle's mother has African ancestors who were slaves in the U.S., said that even during their time of bondage, love helped those in captivity persevere. Gregory Katz And David Rising, Fox News, "Fiery US bishop brings American flair to royal wedding," 19 May 2018 Up until now, we've been fed a narrative that puts Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) at the center of Arnold, and then Ford's (Anthony Hopkins) plan to help the hosts liberate themselves from digital bondage. refinery29.com, "Westworld Season 2, Episode 8: Forget What You Think You Know," 11 June 2018 But within a few years, the Griers would become early Underground Railroad conductors, joining with fellow pioneers and other allies to confront the growing tyranny of bondage and injustice. Lorraine Boissoneault, Smithsonian, "The Unheralded Pioneers of 19th-Century America Were Free African-American Families," 19 June 2018 There is Harriett Tubman, who helped dozens of slaves escape bondage despite the risk of coming back into slaveholding territory time and time again. Clint Smith, The New Republic, "Wake Up, Mr. West!," 3 May 2018 No, it isn't measured in terms of bondage swings, or feet-over-head positions, or even screaming orgasms. Koren Zailckas, Glamour, "No, Husbands and Partners Are Not 'Entitled' to Sex. Ever.," 7 June 2018 His reprehensibly irresponsible comment summarily dismisses history (and reality) and the terrorism and the trauma that effectively kept thousands of blacks in social, psychological, physiological and even spiritual bondage. Tiffany Capers - Contributing Columnist, Observer Editorial Board, charlotteobserver, "What Kanye and Pat McCrory got wrong about blacks | Charlotte Observer," 18 May 2018 Even though slavery was officially abolished in 1863, America continually tried to hold black Americans in bondage. Solomon Jones, Philly.com, "Not everyone in America is free this Fourth of July | Solomon Jones," 3 July 2018 This packed composition inspired by Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry Murals (and shown here only in reproduction) includes numerous historical figures led by an avenging angel fighting against the anti-democratic forces of bondage. James Panero, WSJ, "‘Charles White: A Retrospective’ Review: Shimmering Black History Brought to Life," 27 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bondage.' 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 bondage

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bondage

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from bonde customary tenant, from Middle English

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Dictionary Entries near bondage

Bon, Cape

bonce

bond

bondage

bondager

bondar

bond clay

Statistics for bondage

Last Updated

18 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for bondage

The first known use of bondage was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for bondage

bondage

noun

English Language Learners Definition of bondage

: the state of being a slave

: sexual activity that involves tying a person up for pleasure

bondage

noun
bond·age | \ˈbän-dij \

Kids Definition of bondage

: the state of being a slave

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More from Merriam-Webster on bondage

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bondage

Spanish Central: Translation of bondage

Nglish: Translation of bondage for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bondage for Arabic Speakers

Comments on bondage

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