The idiom "give one's word" usually refers to making a promise or assurance, affirming one's commitment to do something, or standing by a statement or agreement. It's a verbal commitment based on trust and honor.
"Give one's word" typically represents a verbal promise or commitment to fulfill a specific action or uphold an agreement.
The phrase embodies the act of promising or committing to something with a sense of personal honor and integrity. For example, you might give your word to complete a project, keep a secret, fulfill a responsibility, or abide by a deal.
Let's explore its core meanings:
The phrase "give one's word" comes from the Old English word "word," which meant "promise." The phrase first appeared in the early 13th century, and it has been used to mean "promise" or "guarantee" ever since.
In the past, people's word was considered to be their bond. If someone gave their word, it was expected that they would keep it, no matter what. This was because people's reputations were important, and they didn't want to be seen as untrustworthy.
I dare give my word for them, they will never doe it; no, not although it were injoynd to them in ftead of their neckverfe, their whole ftock of wit, when it was at the beft, beeing but ten Englith hexameters and a Lenvoy.
- Have With You to Saffron Walden, Thomas Nash, 1596
Here are some examples of using the idiom in sentences:
The phrase "give one's word" occasionally appears in literature, movies, and television series, reflecting the concept of commitment, trust, and honor.
Let's examine some examples:
There are numerous alternative expressions that convey a similar meaning to "give one's word."
Here are some of them:
"Give one's word" generally means making a promise or commitment, upholding it with personal honor and integrity.
You can use "give one's word" when referring to a commitment or promise. For example, "She gave her word to complete the assignment on time."
The term originated in old English culture, reflecting the importance of a person's word as a binding promise in a time before written contracts.
"Give one's word" can be used in both formal and informal contexts, as it refers to a commitment or promise that is serious in nature.
Primarily, yes. The idiom signifies a verbal promise or commitment. However, it implies a level of honor and trust that extends beyond words.
While the phrase suggests a serious commitment, it is not legally binding in itself unless it's part of a formal contract or agreement.
Yes, "give one's word" can be used in professional situations when one commits to a task, a deadline, or an agreement.
If someone doesn't "keep their word," it means they did not fulfill the promise or commitment they had made.
Yes, "give one's word" can be used in personal settings to make promises to friends, family, or oneself.
Words like pledge, promise, swear, vow, and guarantee can serve as synonyms for "give one's word."
The idiom "give one's word" is a commitment or promise and implies a level of personal honor and integrity in fulfilling that promise. It is an expression applicable in both formal and informal contexts.
Here's a quick recap:
The idiom illustrates trust, commitment, and personal honor's profound role in our social interactions. Let's remember the responsibility of giving our word and strive to honor our commitments.