Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A betrothal.
  • n. A wedding ceremony.
  • n. Adoption of an idea or a cause.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A betrothal.
  • n. A wedding ceremony.
  • n. Adoption of a plan, cause, or idea.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of espousing or betrothing; especially, in the plural, betrothal; plighting of the troths; a contract of marriage; sometimes, the marriage ceremony.
  • n. The uniting or allying one's self with anything; maintenance; adoption.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of espousing or betrothing; formal contract or celebration of marriage: frequently used in the plural.
  • n. Assumption of the protection or defense of anything; advocacy; a taking upon one's self; adoption as by wedding.
  • Relating to the act of espousing or betrothing; marriage (used adjectively).

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the act of accepting with approval; favorable reception
  • n. archaic terms for a wedding or wedding feast
  • n. the act of becoming betrothed or engaged

Etymologies

Middle English espousaille, from sing. of Old French espousailles, betrothal, from Latin spōnsālia, from neuter pl. of spōnsālis, of a betrothal, from spōnsus, spouse; see spouse.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old French espousailles, from Latin sponsalia ("a betrothal"), neuter plural of sponsalis, from spōnsus ("one betrothed, a spouse"); see spouse. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • What would one call the espousal of "gay marriages" and abortion rights?

    magic-city-news.com

  • The espousal was a ceremony of betrothing, a formal agreement between the parties then coming under obligation for the purpose of marriage.

    Easton's Bible Dictionary

  • Of course, if the Assembly preferred, it could opt for the more familiar terminology, rather than the newer term "espousal," so long as the definition chosen ensures equality in name and in substance.

    FindLaw Writ - Recent Articles

  • February 21st, 2009 at 12: 19 pm mr. yglesias, your espousal of mcdonalds does a disservice to the children who may peruse the content of your web journal, and so be further inclined toward consumption of unsalubrious items! best,

    Matthew Yglesias » McDonald’s Or Starbucks

  • Eventually, and one can speculate that because of Marxist ideologies, Germany and the Soviet Union provided espousal, the latter worried about a Japanese invasion of Siberia.

    A rainy day in Shanghai

  • Strauss maintained that all philosophers throughout history had hidden an esoteric message because (1) they feared persecution and (2) they believed an open espousal of nihilistic atheism (which Strauss considered philosophically true) would undermine the moral foundations of social life.

    Matthew Yglesias » Accounting Identities and Straussian Economics

  • The BJP's tough line against terrorism, its commitment to a strong defense and its espousal of pride in India's Hindu culture are all within the bounds of a responsible Indian conservatism.

    India's Conservative Vacuum

  • The BJP's tough line against terrorism, its commitment to a strong defense, and its espousal of pride in India's Hindu culture are all within the bounds of a responsible Indian conservatism.

    India's Conservative Vacuum

  • But a younger generation of Cuban-Americans is less fixated by Castro and his espousal of communism during the cold war.

    Barack Obama acts to ease US embargo on Cuba

  • “Although I expected that the open discussion and espousal of our cause would likely help focus the attentions of many Romulan citizens on the division within their own empire, it seems extremely unlikely to me that what we saw today can be explained as such a consequence.”

    Star Trek: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts of Empire

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.