Share this entry

Share this page


Syllabification: vow

Definition of vow in English:


1A solemn promise.
Example sentences
  • Who would have guessed someone so young could make such a solemn vow and keep it for over fifty years.
  • It is one thing for adults to take vows and fulfil them, and quite another when a vow is taken in the name of a child.
  • Kirkstall was founded as a result of a solemn vow made by Henry de Lacy of Pontefract Castle.
1.1 (vows) A set of promises committing one to a prescribed role, calling, or course of action, typically to marriage or a monastic career.
Example sentences
  • The bill would not force clergy opposed to same-sex marriage to solemnize the vows.
  • I do not believe that civil union vows, or marriage vows for that matter, are only of symbolic value.
  • He then discusses marriage vows, the history of divorce, and modern reinterpretations.


Back to top  
1 [reporting verb] Solemnly promise to do a specified thing: [with clause]: he vowed that his government would not tolerate a repeat of the disorder [with direct speech]: one fan vowed, “I’ll picket every home game.”
More example sentences
  • Campaigners have vowed to continue their fight to try to stop homes being built on part of a school site in Clacton.
  • Furious families today vowed to fight developers for the fourth time to save their last piece of open space.
  • Councillors have vowed to continue to reduce the number of homeless families in Southend.
swear, pledge, promise, avow, undertake, engage, make a commitment, give one's word, guarantee
archaic plight
2 [with object] archaic Dedicate to someone or something, especially a deity: I vowed myself to this enterprise


Middle English: from Old French vou, from Latin votum (see vote); the verb from Old French vouer.

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?