toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books

oblige

used in a sentence
3 meanings
(click/touch triangles for details)
1  —as in:
I am obliged by law.
Definition require (obligate) to do something
  • The law obliges doctors to report suspected child abuse.
obliges = requires
Other Uses (with this meaning)
  • I didn't want to help, but I felt obliged because of our family connections.
  • obliged = required to
  • They looked at me expectantly and I felt obliged to comment.
  • obliged = required
  • The woman could not read, and was obliged to employ another to read the letter.
    Harriet Jacobs  --  Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl
  • obliged = required
  • He had a hammer in his hand, and his mouth was full of little nails, which he was obliged to take out before he could speak.
    Charles Dickens  --  David Copperfield
  • obliged = required
  • I am not obliged to tell you.
    George Eliot  --  Middlemarch
  • obliged = required (to do something)
  • Fanny felt obliged to speak.
    Jane Austen  --  Mansfield Park
  • obliged = required
  • "The woman's an idiot," thought Morris; but he was obliged to say something different.
    Henry James  --  Washington Square
  • obliged = required (to do something)
  • "The lawyer plods, quite care-worn; the physician is up at all hours, and travelling in all weather; and even the clergyman—" she stopt a moment to consider what might do for the clergyman;—"and even the clergyman, you know is obliged to go into infected rooms, and expose his health and looks to all the injury of a poisonous atmosphere."
    Jane Austen  --  Persuasion
  • obliged = required (to do something)
  • Plain sewing was the only thing I could get money by, so I was obliged to try and do it well.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
obliged = required (to do something)

Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary / more samples — Oxford® USDictionary list — Onelook.com®
2  —as in:
I obliged her every request.
Definition grant a favor to someone
  • She asked for help and we obliged her.
obliged = granted a favor to
Other Uses (with this meaning)
  • She escorted her mother in an obliging manner.
  • obliging = helpful
  • I'll be happy to oblige.
  • oblige = grant a favor
  • He obliged her by listening attentively.
  • obliged = grant a favor to
  • She was polite, obliging, cheerful, hopeful;
    Charles Dickens  --  Hard Times
  • obliging = helpful or willing to be helpful
  • Perhaps he voted for somebody, or lent money to somebody, or bought something of somebody, or otherwise obliged somebody, or jobbed for somebody, who knew somebody who got the lieutenant of the county to nominate him for the commission.
    Charles Dickens  --  David Copperfield
  • obliged = granted a favor (to someone)
  • Captain Harville, though not equalling Captain Wentworth in manners, was a perfect gentleman, unaffected, warm, and obliging.
    Jane Austen  --  Persuasion
  • obliging = helpful or willing to be helpful
  • Mr Charles remembered marvelling at how my father showed not one hint of discomfort or anger, but continued to drive with an expression balanced perfectly between personal dignity and readiness to oblige.
    Kazuo Ishiguro  --  The Remains of the Day
  • oblige = be helpful
  • But I wanted to leave things in order and not just trust that obliging and indifferent sea to sweep my refuse away.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  The Great Gatsby
  • obliging = helpful
  • As you know, three ladies asked to leave yesterday, and I obliged.
    Kiera Cass  --  The Selection
obliged = granted the favor

Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary / more samples — Oxford® USDictionary list — Onelook.com®
3  —as in:
I'm much obliged for your kindness
Definition grateful or indebted
  • I am much obliged to you for your help.
obliged = grateful or indebted
Other Uses (with this meaning)
  • I'd be obliged if you could help me lift this.
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • I am much obliged to you for one of the pleasantest evenings I ever spent in my life.
    Charles Dickens  --  Bleak House
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • "I am much obliged to your ladyship for your kind invitation," replied Elizabeth, "but it is not in my power to accept it."
    Jane Austen  --  Pride and Prejudice
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • "Oh yes, thank you," said Maggie, "I'm very much obliged to you."
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • When Mr. Beach offered to carry me home in his buggy, I said, "Thank you, sir, I'd sure be much obliged."
    Olive Ann Burns  --  Cold Sassy Tree
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • I am much obliged to you. I thank you fifty times. Bless you!
    Charles Dickens  --  A Christmas Carol
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • Your kindness to William makes me more obliged to you than words can express;
    Jane Austen  --  Mansfield Park
  • obliged = grateful or indebted
  • I shouldn't have accepted her help, but 'tis a tricky job, and when she came along I was greatly obliged to her.
    Elizabeth George Speare  --  The Witch of Blackbird Pond
  • obliged = grateful
  • I'm much obliged but I couldn't take on any more work.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  The Great Gatsby
obliged = grateful

Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary / more samples — Oxford® USDictionary list — Onelook.com®
Less commonly:
Much more rarely, in classic literature you may see oblige as a synonym for ask as when Jules Verne wrote "I obliged the Professor to move his lamp over the walls of the gallery," in Journey to the Center of the Earth.
Search for other examples by interest
InterestSource
General — Google News®
General — Time® Magazine
General — Wikipedia®
Architecture — Google® books - Architecture
Business — Bloomberg®
Business — The Economist®
Classic Literature — Google® books - Classical Literature
Engineering — Google® books - Engineering
Engineering — Popular Mechanics®
Engineering — Discover Magazine®
Fine Arts & Music — Google® books - Art
History — Google® books - History
Human Behavior — Google® books - Psychology
Human Behavior — Psychology Today®
Law — FindLaw®
Law — Google® books - Law
Logic & Reasoning — Google® books - Reasoning
Medicine — Web MD®
Medicine — Google® books - Medicine
Nature & Ecology — National Geographic®
Nature & Ecology — Google® books - Nature
Personal Finance — Kiplinger® (Personal Finance)
Philosophy — Google® books - Philosophy
Public Policy & Politics — Newsweek®
Public Policy & Politics — Real Clear Politics®
Public Policy & Politics — Google® books - Politics
Religion & Spirtuality — Google® books - Religion
Religion - Christianity — Bible Gateway®
Religion - Christianity — Google® books - Christianity
Science — Popular Science®
Science — Scientific American®
Science — Google® books - Science
Sports — Sports Illustrated®