oath

noun
\ ˈōth How to pronounce oath (audio) \
plural oaths\ ˈōt͟hz How to pronounce oaths (audio) , ˈōths \

Definition of oath

1a(1) : a solemn usually formal calling upon God or a god to witness to the truth of what one says or to witness that one sincerely intends to do what one says
(2) : a solemn attestation of the truth or inviolability of one's words The witness took an oath to tell the truth in court.
b : something (such as a promise) corroborated by an oath They were required to swear an oath of loyalty. took the oath of office
2 : an irreverent or careless use of a sacred name broadly : swear word He uttered an oath and stormed away.

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Synonyms for oath

Synonyms

pledge, promise, troth, vow, word

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Examples of oath in a Sentence

an oath to defend the nation He uttered an oath and walked away.

Recent Examples on the Web

Bound by a blood oath to help him, Wick travels to Rome to square off against the world’s deadliest killers. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week Sept. 1 - 7, 2019: John Wayne in ‘The Searchers’ and more," 30 Aug. 2019 Also last year, the watchdog office concluded that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe had misrepresented under oath his involvement in a news media disclosure, and referred him for possible prosecution. Eric Tucker, The Denver Post, "Former FBI Director James Comey violated FBI policies in handling of memos, DOJ watchdog says," 29 Aug. 2019 McClain was interviewed under oath by NASA Inspector General investigators this month and is reportedly cooperating. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "NASA is investigating what may be the first space crime," 24 Aug. 2019 Nearly three years after his boat sank with his mother on board Nathan Carman will finally tell his story on Wednesday – under oath – of the final voyage of the Chicken Pox. courant.com, "Almost three years after the Chicken Pox sank and his mother disappeared, Nathan Carman will tell his story under oath," 21 Aug. 2019 As John knelt, eyes shut, the priest uttered an oath and slapped him, signaling his purification. Sean Williams, Harper's magazine, "The Black Axe," 19 Aug. 2019 Census workers are required to swear a lifetime oath not to disclose respondents’ personal information, including to other government agencies, under the penalty of up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Chris Hamby, New York Times, "Hacking, Glitches, Disinformation: Why Experts Are Worried About the 2020 Census," 3 July 2019 Meanwhile, some of the players might not want to testify under oath. Michael Mccann, SI.com, "Earlier-Than-Expected Trial Date Alters Strategy for USWNT, U.S. Soccer," 20 Aug. 2019 Under such arrangements, witnesses typically are under oath, and could face punishment if found to have lied. Ana Radelat, courant.com, "Lawmakers say Coast Guard has impeded racism probe at academy," 19 Aug. 2019

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for oath

Middle English ooth, from Old English āth; akin to Old High German eid oath, Middle Irish oeth

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Dictionary Entries near oath

oater

Oates

oat grass

oath

oathay

oath helper

oath of calumny

Statistics for oath

Last Updated

7 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for oath

The first known use of oath was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for oath

oath

noun

English Language Learners Definition of oath

: a formal and serious promise to tell the truth or to do something
old-fashioned : an offensive or rude word that is used to express anger, frustration, surprise, etc.

oath

noun
\ ˈōth How to pronounce oath (audio) \
plural oaths\ ˈōt͟hz , ˈōths \

Kids Definition of oath

1 : a solemn promise to tell the truth or do a specific thing
2 : an obscene or impolite word used to express anger or frustration

oath

Medical Definition of oath

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oath

noun

Legal Definition of oath

1 : a solemn attestation of the truth of one's words or the sincerity of one's intentions specifically : one accompanied by calling upon a deity as a witness
2 : a promise (as to perform official duties faithfully) corroborated by an oath — compare perjury
under oath
: under a solemn and especially legal obligation to tell the truth (as when testifying)

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More from Merriam-Webster on oath

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with oath

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for oath

Spanish Central: Translation of oath

Nglish: Translation of oath for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of oath for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about oath

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