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oblige

[uh-blahyj] /əˈblaɪdʒ/
verb (used with object), obliged, obliging.
1.
to require or constrain, as by law, command, conscience, or force of necessity.
2.
to bind morally or legally, as by a promise or contract.
3.
to place under a debt of gratitude for some benefit, favor, or service:
I'm much obliged for the ride.
4.
to put (one) in a debt of gratitude, as by a favor or accommodation:
Mr. Weems will oblige us with a song.
5.
to make (an action, policy, etc.) necessary or obligatory:
Your carelessness obliges firmness on my part.
verb (used without object), obliged, obliging.
6.
to be kindly accommodating:
I'll do anything within reason to oblige.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English obligen < Old French obligier < Latin obligāre to bind. See obligate
Related forms
obligedly
[uh-blahy-jid-lee] /əˈblaɪ dʒɪd li/ (Show IPA),
adverb
obligedness, noun
obliger, noun
preoblige, verb (used with object), preobliged, preobliging.
reoblige, verb (used with object), reobliged, reobliging.
unobliged, adjective
Can be confused
coerce, compel, constrain, force, oblige (see synonym study at the current entry)
obligate, oblige.
Synonyms
1. compel, force. 2. obligate. 4. Oblige, accommodate imply making a gracious and welcome gesture of some kind. Oblige emphasizes the idea of conferring a favor or benefit (and often of taking some trouble to do it): to oblige someone with a loan. Accommodate emphasizes doing a service or furnishing a convenience: to accommodate someone with lodgings and meals.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for obliges
  • Until some evidence arrives, the pursuit of truth through science obliges us to entertain multiple hypotheses.
  • The current tenure system obliges us all to be producers of those things, but there are no consumers.
  • She cheerfully obliges, telling the visitors that the craters are old features-probably not dangerous right now.
  • On account of the intimate relation of dream fear to neurotic fear, discussion of the former obliges me to refer to the latter.
  • But, as for all other degrees of heat, nothing obliges us to think the same of them.
  • It obliges you to believe that the stuff that happened to you is worth writing down because it happened to you.
  • He asks her to use her right hand to point to a student who is taking notes, and she obliges.
  • No zero-sum calculus, however, obliges us to choose one of those enterprises over the other.
  • The haunted house they break into, the center of the series, obliges.
  • He might say that governing in a minority obliges him to play fast and loose with parliamentary nicety.
British Dictionary definitions for obliges

oblige

/əˈblaɪdʒ/
verb
1.
(transitive; often passive) to bind or constrain (someone to do something) by legal, moral, or physical means
2.
(transitive; usually passive) to make indebted or grateful (to someone) by doing a favour or service: we are obliged to you for dinner
3.
to do a service or favour to (someone): she obliged the guest with a song
Derived Forms
obliger, noun
Word Origin
C13: from Old French obliger, from Latin obligāre, from ob- to, towards + ligāre to bind
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for obliges

oblige

v.

c.1300, "to bind by oath," from Old French obligier "engage one's faith, commit (oneself), pledge" (13c.), from Latin obligare "to bind, bind up, bandage," figuratively "put under obligation," from ob "to" (see ob-) + ligare "to bind," from PIE root *leig- "to bind" (see ligament). Main modern meaning "to make (someone) indebted by conferring a benefit or kindness" is from 1560s. Related: obliged; obliging.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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