or be·troth·ment

[bih-troh-thuh l, -traw-thuh l]
See more synonyms for betrothal on

Origin of betrothal

First recorded in 1835–45; betroth + -al2
Related formspre·be·troth·al, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for betrothal

engagement, vow, promise, espousal, plight, troth

Examples from the Web for betrothal

Contemporary Examples of betrothal

  • Princess Beatrice is widely thought to be on the point of announcing her betrothal to her boyfriend of six years, Dave Clark.

Historical Examples of betrothal

  • Nelly, next week it will be a year since our first betrothal; do you remember?

  • The betrothal was completed before Frederick stood so near to the throne.

    The Avenger

    E. Phillips Oppenheim

  • Sometimes the illusion disappears while there is yet time to break off the betrothal.

  • Also he intended to announce the betrothal of the young couple.

    A Nest of Spies

    Pierre Souvestre

  • The betrothal of the parties shall be made by the next of kin, or if there are none, by the guardians.



British Dictionary definitions for betrothal


  1. engagement to be married
  2. a mutual promise to marry
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

Word Origin and History for betrothal

1844, from betroth + -al (2). Earlier in same sense were betrothment (1580s), betrothing (14c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper