fraught

adjective
\ ˈfrȯt How to pronounce fraught (audio) \

Definition of fraught

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : full of or accompanied by something specified used with with a situation fraught with dangerThe paper was poorly researched and is fraught with errors.
2 : causing or characterized by emotional distress or tension : uneasy a fraught relationship
3 archaic
a : laden
b : well supplied or provided

fraught

noun
\ ˈfrȯḵt How to pronounce fraught (audio) \

Definition of fraught (Entry 2 of 3)

chiefly Scotland
: load, cargo

fraught

verb
\ ˈfrȯḵt How to pronounce fraught (audio) \
fraughted or fraught; fraughting

Definition of fraught (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

chiefly Scotland

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Did You Know?

Verb

The drowmound was so hevy fraught / That unethe myght it saylen aught. That verse, from the 14th-century poem "Richard Coer de Lion," says that a large ship (a dromond) was so heavily loaded that it could barely sail. That's the first instance we have on record of the adjective "fraught." The word came to Middle English from the Middle Dutch or Middle Low German noun vracht, which meant "load" and which is also the source of the word freight. Middle English also possessed a noun "fraught" that meant "load" and a verb "fraughten" that meant "to load" (meanings still retained in Scottish English by "fraught," the verb and noun). For centuries, "fraught" continued to be used only of loaded ships, but its use was eventually broadened.

Examples of fraught in a Sentence

Adjective every room in my childhood home is fraught with memories had a fraught meeting with his estranged wife to discuss a divorce settlement
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Baltimore’s water billing system has been fraught with problems, including numerous instances of overbilling. Emily Opilo, baltimoresun.com, "Under pressure from advocates, Baltimore to remove owner-occupied homes from annual tax sale," 3 May 2021 But any effort by the intelligence community to wade into the murky area of domestic spying is fraught with political risks, current and former officials say. Zachary Cohen And Katie Bo Williams, CNN, "Biden team may partner with private firms to surveil suspected domestic terrorists online," 3 May 2021 Economists warn that predicting how much households will spend is fraught with difficulty, given that there are few precedents for such a large buildup of savings over such a short period. Paul Hannon, WSJ, "Covid-19 Savings Stockpile Could Accelerate Economy—if Consumers Spend It," 2 May 2021 Development of Astra’s vaccine has been fraught with concern, especially in the U.S., where use may be further delayed after the White House announced its entire supply would be shared with other countries. Fortune, "AstraZeneca seeks FDA emergency approval after missing target," 30 Apr. 2021 In South Carolina, Indiana, Michigan and other states, Republican politics are fraught with tensions between QAnon supporters and more traditional conservatives. Sophie Bjork-james, Chron, "QAnon hasn't gone away - it's alive and kicking in states across the country," 26 Apr. 2021 Boy Scout summer camp is fraught with anxiety for the teenager Aiden Navarro when he is bullied for his Filipino heritage, while questioning his religion and sexuality. Michelle Lee, New York Times, "Teach Your Kids to Resist Hatred Toward Asians," 24 Apr. 2021 To the best of my knowledge, relocation is fraught with problems: introduction of new diseases, territorial issues, and the animal’s need to relearn where to forage. BostonGlobe.com, "My friend keeps ignoring my advice about solving a problem," 23 Apr. 2021 Her priority is not only to defend a police force that is fraught with racist killings, but to reward officers for their actions in the form of Congressional Gold Medals. Asia Ewart, refinery29.com, "Marjorie Taylor Greene Wants To Give Congressional Gold Medals To Minneapolis Police," 14 Apr. 2021

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for fraught

Adjective

Middle English, from past participle of fraughten — see fraught entry 3

Noun

Middle English, freight, load, from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German vracht, vrecht

Verb

Middle English fraughten, from fraught entry 2

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Time Traveler for fraught

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for fraught

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fraught.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fraught. Accessed 14 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for fraught

fraught

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of fraught

: causing or having a lot of emotional stress or worry

fraught

adjective
\ ˈfrȯt How to pronounce fraught (audio) \

Kids Definition of fraught

: full of some quality The situation is fraught with danger.

Comments on fraught

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