Definitions for: Pledge

[n] a binding commitment to do or give or refrain from something; "an assurance of help when needed"; "signed a pledge never to reveal the secret"
[n] a drink in honor of or to the health of a person or event
[n] someone accepted for membership but not yet fully admitted to the group
[n] a deposit of personal property as security for a debt; "his saxophone was in pledge"
[v] promise solemnly and formally
[v] bind or secure by a pledge
[v] give as a guarantee; "I pledge my honor"
[v] propose a toast to; "Let us toast the birthday girl!"; "Let's drink to the New Year"
[v] pay (an amount of money) as a contribution to a charity or service, esp. at regular intervals; "I pledged $10 a month to my favorite radio station"

Webster (1913) Definition: Pledge, n. [OF. plege, pleige, pledge, guaranty, LL.
plegium, plivium; akin to OF. plevir to bail, guaranty,
perhaps fr. L. praebere to proffer, offer (sc. fidem a trust,
a promise of security), but cf. also E. play. [root]28. Cf.
Prebend, Replevin.]
1. (Law) The transfer of possession of personal property from
a debtor to a creditor as security for a debt or
engagement; also, the contract created between the debtor
and creditor by a thing being so delivered or deposited,
forming a species of bailment; also, that which is so
delivered or deposited; something put in pawn.

Note: Pledge is ordinarily confined to personal property; the
title or ownership does not pass by it; possession is
essential to it. In all these points it differs from a
mortgage [see Mortgage]; and in the last, from the
hypotheca of the Roman law. See Hypotheca. --Story.

2. (Old Eng. Law) A person who undertook, or became
responsible, for another; a bail; a surety; a hostage. ``I
am Grumio's pledge.'' --Shak.

3. A hypothecation without transfer of possession.

4. Anything given or considered as a security for the
performance of an act; a guarantee; as, mutual interest is
the best pledge for the performance of treaties. ``That
voice, their liveliest pledge of hope.'' --Milton.

5. A promise or agreement by which one binds one's self to
do, or to refrain from doing, something; especially, a
solemn promise in writing to refrain from using
intoxicating liquors or the like; as, to sign the pledge;
the mayor had made no pledges.

6. A sentiment to which assent is given by drinking one's
health; a toast; a health.

Dead pledge. [A translation of LL. mortuum vadium.] (Law)
A mortgage. See Mortgage.

Living pledge. [A translation of LL. vivum vadium.] (Law)
The conveyance of an estate to another for money borrowed,
to be held by him until the debt is paid out of the rents
and profits.

To hold in pledge, to keep as security.

To put in pledge, to pawn; to give as security.

Syn: See Earnest.

Pledge, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Pledged; p. pr. & vb. n.
Pledging.] [Cf. OF. pleiger to give security. See Pledge,
1. To deposit, as a chattel, in pledge or pawn; to leave in
possession of another as security; as, to pledge one's

2. To give or pass as a security; to guarantee; to engage; to
plight; as, to pledge one's word and honor.

We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our
fortunes, and our sacred honor. --The
Declaration of

3. To secure performance of, as by a pledge. [Obs.]

To pledge my vow, I give my hand. --Shak.

4. To bind or engage by promise or declaration; to engage
solemnly; as, to pledge one's self.

5. To invite another to drink, by drinking of the cup first,
and then handing it to him, as a pledge of good will;
hence, to drink the health of; to toast.

Pledge me, my friend, and drink till thou be'st
wise. --Cowley.

Synonyms: assurance, drink, plight, salute, subscribe, toast, toast, wassail

See Also: assure, bind, booze, charge, commitment, consign, covenant, dedication, donate, drink, fuddle, give, give, guarantee, guarantee, hold, honor, honour, hypothecate, member, obligate, oblige, pawn, plight, promise, reward, security interest, troth, vouch, vow, vow, warrant, warrantee, warranty

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