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vow

[vou] /vaʊ/
noun
1.
a solemn promise, pledge, or personal commitment:
marriage vows; a vow of secrecy.
2.
a solemn promise made to a deity or saint committing oneself to an act, service, or condition.
3.
a solemn or earnest declaration.
verb (used with object)
4.
to make a vow of; promise by a vow, as to God or a saint:
to vow a crusade or a pilgrimage.
5.
to pledge or resolve solemnly to do, make, give, observe, etc.:
They vowed revenge.
6.
to declare solemnly or earnestly; assert emphatically (often followed by a clause as object):
She vowed that she would take the matter to court.
7.
to dedicate or devote by a vow:
to vow oneself to the service of God.
verb (used without object)
8.
to make a vow.
9.
to make a solemn or earnest declaration.
Idioms
10.
take vows, to enter a religious order or house.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English < Anglo-French, Old French vo(u) < Latin vōtum, neuter of vōtus, past participle of vovēre to vow
Related forms
vower, noun
vowless, adjective
unvowed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for vows
  • In what is becoming a tradition on the glacier, couples are using it to exchange wedding vows.
  • After all, in marriage vows these days, people still do typically promise to be faithful.
  • The right is awash in proposed vows, offered up by interest groups seeking to bind candidates.
  • She vows to avenge him, which drives the plot in the rest of the books.
  • In standing against evil she disobeys her vows and comes to the realization that she can no longer be a nun.
  • They both spoke nobly at the end, they kept faith with their vows for each other.
  • In fact, fifty percent or more break their marriage vows by divorcing and often re-marrying others.
  • The two countries' fervent renewal of their vows is good news.
  • It vows to block the tax bill, even though raising the consumption tax has long been a plank in its own policies.
  • They refrain from breaking their marriage vows when they believe that the guilt would feel worse than the pleasure.
British Dictionary definitions for vows

vow

/vaʊ/
noun
1.
a solemn or earnest pledge or promise binding the person making it to perform a specified act or behave in a certain way
2.
a solemn promise made to a deity or saint, by which the promiser pledges himself to some future act, course of action, or way of life
3.
take vows, to enter a religious order and commit oneself to its rule of life by the vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, which may be taken for a limited period as simple vows or as a perpetual and still more solemn commitment as solemn vows
verb
4.
(transitive; may take a clause as object or an infinitive) to pledge, promise, or undertake solemnly: he vowed that he would continue, he vowed to return
5.
(transitive) to dedicate or consecrate to God, a deity, or a saint
6.
(transitive; usually takes a clause as object) to assert or swear emphatically
7.
(intransitive) (archaic) to declare solemnly
Derived Forms
vower, noun
vowless, adjective
Word Origin
C13: from Old French vou, from Latin vōtum a solemn promise, from vovēre to vow
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for vows

vow

n.

c.1300, from Anglo-French and Old French vou, from Latin votum "a vow, wish, promise, dedication," noun use of neuter of votus, past participle of vovere "to promise solemnly, pledge, dedicate, vow," from PIE root *ewegwh- "to speak solemnly, vow" (cf. Sanskrit vaghat- "one who offers a sacrifice;" Greek eukhe "vow, wish," eukhomai "I pray").

v.

c.1300, from Old French vouer, from vou (see vow (n.)). Related: Vowed; vowing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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vows in the Bible

voluntary promises which, when once made, were to be kept if the thing vowed was right. They were made under a great variety of circumstances (Gen. 28: 18-22; Lev. 7:16; Num. 30:2-13; Deut. 23:18; Judg. 11:30, 39; 1 Sam. 1:11; Jonah 1:16; Acts 18:18; 21:23).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Encyclopedia Article for vows

vow

sacred voluntary promise to dedicate oneself or members of one's family or community to a special obligation that goes beyond usual social or religious requirements.

Learn more about vow with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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10
11
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