pledge

noun
\ ˈplej How to pronounce pledge (audio) \

Definition of pledge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a bailment of a chattel as security for a debt or other obligation without involving transfer of title
b : the chattel so delivered
c : the contract incidental to such a bailment
2a : the state of being held as a security or guaranty
b : something given as security for the performance of an act
3 : a token, sign, or earnest of something else
4 : a gage of battle
6a : a binding promise or agreement to do or forbear
b(1) : a promise to join a fraternity, sorority, or secret society
(2) : a person who has so promised

pledge

verb
pledged; pledging

Definition of pledge (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to make a pledge of especially : pawn
2 : to drink to the health of
3 : to bind by a pledge
4 : to promise the performance of by a pledge

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Other Words from pledge

Verb

pledger \ ˈple-​jər How to pronounce pledge (audio) \ or pledgor \ ˈple-​jər How to pronounce pledge (audio) , ple-​ˈjȯr \ noun

Synonyms for pledge

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of pledge in a Sentence

Noun He has promised to fulfill a campaign pledge to cut taxes. To make a pledge or donation, please call the charity's office. The company has made a pledge of over $3,000. He left his car as a pledge that he would return with the money. Verb Her family pledged $100,000 toward the construction of a new school. He called to pledge money to the charity. Every morning, we pledge allegiance to the flag. teenagers who have pledged not to start smoking During his campaign, he pledged that he would not raise taxes. The chefs are pledged to keep the restaurant's special recipe a secret. He pledged his paintings as collateral for a loan.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun What Todd witnessed that day from Blackshire — playing on the same team as Garland Lakeview Centennial running back Camar Wheaton, another Alabama pledge — is something many outside of Dallas would see soon. Joseph Hoyt, Dallas News, "Meet Kendrick Blackshire, Duncanville’s Alabama-bound LB who’s more than just a viral sensation for his hulking figure," 31 Dec. 2020 The Minnesota DFL Party also had electors sign a pledge to support their party's winner. Jessie Van Berkel, Star Tribune, "Electors prepare to cast Minnesota's votes for Biden as Trump keeps up false claims," 12 Dec. 2020 Companies that partner with the council sign a three-year pledge and work with an executive board of industry professionals who advise on the work each brand is committing to do. Melissa Magsaysay, Los Angeles Times, "The watchdogs making sure fashion does more than talk about being inclusive," 11 Dec. 2020 Biden was among the candidates to sign a pledge that half his national security positions would be held by women. Melissa Gira Grant, The New Republic, "The Consultant-Class Feminism of Joe Biden’s Cabinet," 2 Dec. 2020 The initiative is receiving additional support from 27 charter pledge partners — including Verizon, Merck, Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange — that already have at least one Black member on their boards of directors. Chauncey Alcorn Cnn Business, CNN, "Zillow, M.M. LaFleur join list of corporations pledging to add at least one Black member to their board of directors," 9 Sep. 2020 During the first week of classes, students will receive a welcome kit that includes two face coverings, forehead thermometer strips hand sanitizer and wipes and a student pledge card along with other items in a drawstring bag. cleveland, "Celebrate Independent Bookstore Day and find your calm: Valley Views," 24 Aug. 2020 Having gone over the safety measures, each staffer was asked to sign a document that committed them to social distancing outside work hours, a mutual coronavirus-prevention pledge. Simon Montlake, The Christian Science Monitor, "Will America still go out to eat? One restaurateur’s moment of truth.," 29 June 2020 The new appointees will work alongside Brian Deese, Mr. Biden’s incoming NEC director, to flesh out the president-elect’s pledge to rebuild the economy amid a worsening pandemic that has devastated many U.S. businesses and left millions unemployed. Andrew Restuccia, WSJ, "Biden Adds New Members to His White House Economic Team," 21 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The New Georgia Project, which was founded by Stacey Abrams, asks people to pledge to defend reproductive justice by pledging to vote. Melissa Gira Grant, The New Republic, "The Election in Georgia Is About Reproductive Justice," 5 Jan. 2021 Two women died in a homeless encampment under I-83 in downtown Baltimore on Thursday and Friday, prompting city officials to pledge to get more people into shelters and housing. Jean Marbella, baltimoresun.com, "Two women die in downtown Baltimore homeless encampment," 18 Dec. 2020 Sparked by the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis, the unrest prompted companies around the country to pledge their support for causes that promote diversity. Jennifer Surane, Bloomberg.com, "AmEx Pledges $1 Billion in Push to Promote Racial, Gender Equity," 29 Oct. 2020 The volunteers ask people to pledge to vote, a simple ask that helps people make a voting plan. Zoë Jackson, Star Tribune, "Minnesota teen activists get others to the polls, even though they're too young to vote," 9 Oct. 2020 In honor of Global Running Day, Black Girls Run has been hosting a six-week virtual challenge and asked its members to pledge to run a certain amount of miles Wednesday. Aria Gerson, USA TODAY, "For black running groups, hosting a community is key in times of stress," 3 June 2020 By 2001, consumer outrage had prompted the major chocolate companies to pledge to end the worst forms of child labor in the cacao industry. The New York Times News Service Syndicate, The Denver Post, "Everything you need to know about chocolate," 14 Feb. 2020 Applicants pledge to respect Hawaii's culture and natural resources, and participants must commit several hours a week to helping a local nonprofit. CBS News, "Hawaii beckons "Movers & Shakas" to work remotely from its paradisiacal shores," 30 Nov. 2020 States supporting popular election of the president can pledge to require their electors to vote for the winner of the national popular vote, rather than just the popular vote in that state. Bruce Bartlett, The New Republic, "The Never-Ending Crisis of the Electoral College," 12 Nov. 2020

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pledge

Noun

Middle English plegge security, from Anglo-French plege, from Late Latin plebium, from *plebere to pledge, probably of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German pflegan to take care of — more at plight

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Time Traveler for pledge

Time Traveler

The first known use of pledge was in the 15th century

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Statistics for pledge

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pledge.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pledge. Accessed 18 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for pledge

pledge

noun
How to pronounce pledge (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of pledge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a serious promise or agreement
: a promise to give money
: something that you leave with another person as a way to show that you will keep your promise

pledge

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pledge (Entry 2 of 2)

: to formally promise to give or do (something)
: to cause (someone) to formally promise something
: to give (something) as a way to show that you will keep your promise to someone

pledge

noun
\ ˈplej How to pronounce pledge (audio) \

Kids Definition of pledge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a promise or agreement that must be kept
2 : something handed over to another to ensure that the giver will keep his or her promise or agreement
3 : a promise to give money

pledge

verb
pledged; pledging

Kids Definition of pledge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to promise to give I pledge allegiance.
2 : to cause (someone) to promise something He pledged himself to secrecy.
3 : to give as assurance of a promise (as of repayment of a loan)

pledge

noun
\ ˈplej How to pronounce pledge (audio) \

Legal Definition of pledge

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a delivery of especially personal property as security for a debt or other obligation broadly : the perfection of a security interest in collateral through possession of the collateral by a creditor or other promisee
2a : property and especially personal property that is used as security especially upon delivery broadly : a security interest in collateral — compare chattel mortgage at mortgage
b : a contract under which the delivery of property (as personal property) as security takes place
3a : the state of being held as security or guaranty property held in pledge
b : something given as security for the performance of an act
4 : a binding promise to do or forbear
pledged; pledging

Legal Definition of pledge (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to deliver or otherwise put forward as security for a debt or other obligation pledged his car as collateral for the loan
2 : to bind by a pledge we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honorDeclaration of Independence
3 : to assure or promise the performance or payment of

Other Words from pledge

pledgor \ ˈple-​jər, ple-​ˈjȯr How to pronounce pledge (audio) \ or pledger \ ˈple-​jər How to pronounce pledge (audio) \ noun

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