• synonyms


or be·troth·ment

[bih-troh-thuh l, -traw-thuh l]
  1. the act or state of being betrothed; engagement.
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Origin of betrothal

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

Related Words

engagement, vow, promise, espousal, plight, troth

Examples from the Web for betrothals

Historical Examples

  • In betrothals there was but a bridegroom that asked and a father that gave.

    Historia Amoris: A History of Love, Ancient and Modern

    Edgar Saltus

  • Lovers in their betrothals engaged to observe it reciprocally.

  • She thought of the other hurried War-bridals and betrothals all over the country.

  • Then the man commenced an elaborate account of the betrothals.

  • "Betrothals are epidemic in this household and neighborhood," Winston was writing.

    At Last

    Marion Harland

British Dictionary definitions for betrothals


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



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

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper