to be under obligation to pay or repay: to owe money to the bank; to owe the bank interest on a mortgage.
to be in debt to: He says he doesn't owe anybody.
to be indebted (to) as the cause or source of: to owe one's fame to good fortune.
to have or bear (a feeling or attitude) toward someone or something: to owe gratitude to one's rescuers.
Obsolete. to possess; own.
to be in debt: Neither lend nor owe. Who owes for the antipasto?
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use owe in a sentence
The Dodgers also owe him $62 million more for ’22 and ’23, but Bauer can opt out after either season if he is so magnificent that he can get a better offer.
They may be owed refunds or have challenged a tax liability.
They could only see the top of the person’s face, owing to a coronavirus mask, but said in court records that it was enough to appear similar to Cline’s federal probation photo and bank surveillance images.Previously convicted bank robber allegedly hits new bank while under covert surveillance, gets arrested | Dan Morse | February 12, 2021 | Washington Post
Then, owing to the whoever-cooks-doesn't-clean-up rule, I'm left with a tremendous mess to deal with.Carolyn Hax: How to improve on ‘I cook, you clean’ without stirring the pot | Carolyn Hax | February 12, 2021 | Washington Post
The uncomfortable truth is that the United States owes its position as the most powerful nation in the world to its slave-owning past.'Uncomfortable truth’: The new push for a slavery reparations commission in Congress | DeNeen L. Brown | February 10, 2021 | Washington Post
That they got one may owe something to the organization's political connections.
How does the world owe you a private car, priced as you deem acceptable, that didn't exist five years ago?
So I tweet things like "you don't owe white people any convos" to support others.
"It's almost like black folks think white folks owe them something," Bundy whines.
We exclude Catholics because they owe allegiance to an institution that is foreign to the Government of the United States.A Brief History of Wingnuts in America; From George Washington to Woodstock | John Avlon | August 17, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
I will go instantly to my father; tell him we owe our lives to you—and that will be quite sufficient.
I owe you a large debt of gratitude, which I want to work out—so do not talk of sending me away.The World Before Them | Susanna Moodie
Servants should honour their masters by showing that respect, and rendering that obedience, which they owe to them.The Ordinance of Covenanting | John Cunningham
It is divided throughout its whole extent by a chain of mountains, which in general owe their formation to volcanic eruptions.Tobacco; Its History, Varieties, Culture, Manufacture and Commerce | E. R. Billings.
It's wretched enough to owe money to anybody, but I'd have felt safer if we'd borrowed from Mrs. Calvert or even from a bank.Dorothy at Skyrie | Evelyn Raymond
British Dictionary definitions for owe
to be under an obligation to pay (someone) to the amount of
(intr) to be in debt: he still owes for his house
(often foll by to) to have as a result (of): he owes his success to chance
to feel the need or obligation to do, give, etc: to owe somebody thanks; to owe it to oneself to rest
to hold or maintain in the mind or heart (esp in the phrase owe a grudge)
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