from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- transitive v. To constrain by physical, legal, social, or moral means.
- transitive v. To make indebted or grateful: I am obliged to you for your gracious hospitality.
- transitive v. To do a service or favor for: They obliged us by arriving early.
- intransitive v. To do a service or favor: The soloist obliged with yet another encore.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- v. To constrain someone by force or by social, moral or legal means.
- v. To do someone a service or favour (hence, originally, creating an obligation).
- v. To be indebted to someone.
- v. To do a service or favour.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- transitive v. To attach, as by a bond.
- transitive v. To constrain by physical, moral, or legal force; to put under obligation to do or forbear something.
- transitive v. To bind by some favor rendered; to place under a debt; hence, to do a favor to; to please; to gratify; to accommodate.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To bind; attach; devote.
- To bind, constrain, or compel by any physical, moral, or legal force or influence; place under the obligation or necessity (especially moral necessity) of doing some particular thing or of pursuing some particular course.
- To lay under obligation of gratitude, etc., by some act of courtesy or kindness; hence, to gratify; serve; do a service to or confer a favor upon; be of service to; do a kindness or good turn to: as, kindly oblige me by shutting the door; in the passive, to be indebted.
- Synonyms To force, coerce. To serve, accommodate.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. provide a service or favor for someone
- v. bind by an obligation; cause to be indebted
- v. force somebody to do something
Middle English obligen, from Old French obligier, from Latin obligāre : ob-, to; see ob- + ligāre, to bind; see leig- in Indo-European roots.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old French obliger < Latin obligo, from ob- + ligo. (Wiktionary)