- to require or constrain, as by law, command, conscience, or force of necessity.
- to bind morally or legally, as by a promise or contract.
- to place under a debt of gratitude for some benefit, favor, or service: I'm much obliged for the ride.
- to put (one) in a debt of gratitude, as by a favor or accommodation: Mr. Weems will oblige us with a song.
- to make (an action, policy, etc.) necessary or obligatory: Your carelessness obliges firmness on my part.
- to be kindly accommodating: I'll do anything within reason to oblige.
Origin of oblige
SynonymsSee more synonyms for oblige on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for obliged
There, so taken, caught in the act, flat-footed, we are obliged to make our stand.McConaughey’s ‘Stand’—And Ours
December 5, 2014
After each session, she would sit with those who obliged and speak to them about their past, problems and desires.Whip It: Secrets of a Dominatrix
November 25, 2014
No soldier is obliged to obey a law contrary to the law of God.Why Pope Francis Wants to Declare Murdered Archbishop Romero a Saint
August 24, 2014
Now that we have gotten over these multifarious horribles, we are obliged to ponder the bigger picture.Gay Marriage Vs. the First Amendment
August 22, 2014
Rather than helplessly obeying the dictates of management, workers are obliged to do what union bosses tell them.A Crazy California Union Scandal
August 2, 2014
He never ceased to feel cheated when he was obliged to ride in New York.
I think, on the whole, I shan't be obliged to learn to braid straw.
Sometimes he packed clumsily, and she was obliged to do his work over.
I was once a poor boy myself, obliged to struggle for my living.
Only Ambrose was, at parting for the night, obliged to ask him for the key of the gate.The Armourer's Prentices
Charlotte M. Yonge
- (tr; often passive) to bind or constrain (someone to do something) by legal, moral, or physical means
- (tr; usually passive) to make indebted or grateful (to someone) by doing a favour or servicewe are obliged to you for dinner
- to do a service or favour to (someone)she obliged the guest with a song
Word Origin and History for obliged
c.1600, past participle adjective from oblige. To be obliged "be bound by ties of gratitude" is from 1540s.
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.