obligate

verb
ob·​li·​gate | \ ˈä-blə-ˌgāt How to pronounce obligate (audio) \
obligated; obligating

Definition of obligate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to bind legally or morally : constrain You are obligated to repay the loan.
2 : to commit (something, such as funds) to meet an obligation funds obligated for new projects

obligate

adjective
ob·​li·​gate | \ ˈä-bli-gət How to pronounce obligate (audio) , -blə-ˌgāt\

Definition of obligate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : restricted to one particularly characteristic mode of life an obligate parasite
2 : biologically essential for survival obligate mutualism

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Other Words from obligate

Adjective

obligately adverb

Examples of obligate in a Sentence

Verb

The contract obligates the firm to complete the work in six weeks. the problem is of your own making, so don't think that you can obligate me to help

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Taught by Rabbi Yosef Rice: Does the Torah obligate to save a life in need? Alan Goch, sun-sentinel.com, "Palm Beach central and north county events for July 3-9," 3 July 2019 Parents also aren’t obligated to send their children to a full-day program, though some districts are doing away with their half-day classes. Meg Wingerter, The Denver Post, "Colorado’s full-day kindergarten bill helps most Denver-area districts, but challenges the richest and poorest," 29 June 2019 Rather, the beneficiary deed naming Kurth as owner obligated Owens to move out. Russ Wiles, azcentral, "Reverse mortgages can cause problems when spouses, heirs aren't on board," 12 June 2019 The order includes both obligate carnivores such as lions, as well as bamboo-munching pandas. Brian Kateman, Quartz, "Vegan pets sound bougie, but they might just save the Earth," 12 June 2019 Taught by Rabbi Yosef Rice: Does the Torah obligate to save a life in need? Alan Goch, sun-sentinel.com, "Palm Beach central and north county events for June 19-25," 14 June 2019 They were obligated to derive the maximum number of emotional possibilities from each and every one of their loves. Sarah Vitali, Harper's magazine, "Kill Your Darlings," 10 May 2019 Los Angeles wanted Countess on the team, but not for what the Rams were obligated to pay him for the 2019 season. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al.com, "Blake Countess goes from ‘I think’ to ‘I know’ between stops in Philadelphia," 5 June 2019 It’s much easier to obligate private citizens to spend their own money rather than to properly manage public lands. ... WSJ, "Protect Homes by Managing Forests to Prevent Fires," 2 Apr. 2019

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

Verb

1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1887, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for obligate

Verb

borrowed from Latin obligātus, past participle of obligāre "to tie up, restrain by tying, place under a legal or moral constraint" — more at oblige

Adjective

borrowed from German obligat "necessary, unavoidable," borrowed from Latin obligātus "under an obligation," from past participle of obligāre "to tie up, restrain by tying, place under a legal or moral constraint" — more at oblige

Note: In biological sense apparently adapted from use of German obligat by the mycologist Heinrich Anton de Bary (1831-88) in Vergleichende Morphologie und Biologie der Pilze, Mycetozoen und Bacterien (Leipzig, 1884), p. 382 ff.

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Statistics for obligate

Last Updated

8 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for obligate

The first known use of obligate was in 1533

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More Definitions for obligate

obligate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of obligate

: to make (a person or organization) do something because the law requires it or because it is the right thing to do

obligate

verb
ob·​li·​gate | \ ˈä-blə-ˌgāt How to pronounce obligate (audio) \
obligated; obligating

Kids Definition of obligate

: to make (someone) do something by law or because it is right The contract obligates you to pay monthly.

obligate

adjective
ob·​li·​gate | \ ˈäb-li-gət How to pronounce obligate (audio) , -lə-ˌgāt How to pronounce obligate (audio) \

Medical Definition of obligate

1 : restricted to one particularly characteristic mode of life or way of functioning the infant is an obligate nose breatherJournal of the American Medical Association an obligate parasite
2 : biologically essential for survival obligate parasitism

Other Words from obligate

obligately adverb

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obligate

transitive verb
ob·​li·​gate | \ ˈä-blə-ˌgāt How to pronounce obligate (audio) \
obligated; obligating

Legal Definition of obligate

1 : to bind legally or morally was obligated to pay child support
2 : to commit (as funds or property) to meet or provide security for an obligation

Other Words from obligate

obligatory \ ə-​ˈbli-​gə-​ˌtōr-​ē How to pronounce obligatory (audio) \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on obligate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with obligate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for obligate

Spanish Central: Translation of obligate

Nglish: Translation of obligate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obligate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on obligate

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