• WordNet 3.6
    • adj obligate restricted to a particular condition of life "an obligate anaerobe can survive only in the absence of oxygen"
    • v obligate bind by an obligation; cause to be indebted "He's held by a contract","I'll hold you by your promise"
    • v obligate commit in order to fulfill an obligation "obligate money"
    • v obligate force somebody to do something "We compel all students to fill out this form"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Obliging Horseman Obliging Horseman
"No, mom; much obliged jest the same." "No, mom; much obliged jest the same."
He was obliged to send Beauty herself in his place He was obliged to send Beauty herself in his place

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: According to company lore, Ole Evinrude, a Norwegian immigrant, got the idea for an outboard motor while on a picnic with his sweetheart Bessie. They were on a small island in Lake Michigan, when Bessie decided she wanted some ice cream. Ole obligingly rowed to shore to get some, but by the time he made it back the ice cream had melted. So Ole built a motor that could be attached to his rowboat, and founded the Evinrude company in 1909.
    • Obligate To bind or firmly hold to an act; to compel; to constrain; to bind to any act of duty or courtesy by a formal pledge. "That they may not incline or be obligated to any vile or lowly occupations."
    • Obligate To bring or place under obligation, moral or legal; to hold by a constraining motive. "Obligated by a sense of duty.""That's your true plan -- to obligate The present ministers of state."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • obligate To bind by legal or moral tie, as by oath, indenture, or treaty; bring under legal or moral obligation; hold to some specific act or duty; pledge.
    • obligate To place under obligation in any way, as on account of continued favors or repeated acts of kindness; make beholden or indebted; constrain by considerations of duty, expediency, courtesy, etc.
    • obligate Constrained or bound; having of necessity a particular character, or restricted to a particular course.
    • n obligate An obligate parasite. See quotation under obligate, a.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Obligate to constrain: to bind by contract or duty:—pr.p. ob′ligāting; pa.p. ob′ligāted
    • ***


  • Sir Walter Scott
    “Ambition breaks the ties of blood, and forgets the obligations of gratitude.”
  • Voltaire
    “We cannot always oblige; but we can always speak obligingly.”
  • Edouard Manes
    Edouard Manes
    “The country has charms only for those not obliged to stay there.”
  • Wayne Dyer
    “Relationships based on obligation lack dignity.”
  • Baltasar Gracian
    “To oblige persons often costs little and helps much.”
  • Wayne Dyer
    “If you are living out of a sense of obligation you are slave.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. obligatus, p. p. of obligare,. See Oblige
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L. obligāre, -ātumob, before, ligāre, to bind.


In literature:

My means of support are so scanty, that I am obliged to write without paying postage, or not write at all.
"The Underground Railroad" by William Still
I shall show you as much as I can of London to-morrow, mother, as you will be obliged to return the day after.
"Gladys, the Reaper" by Anne Beale
Obliged to bear away for the Cape of Good Hope.
"A Voyage to the South Sea" by William Bligh
The only inconvenience we laboured under was, the being obliged to make the fire at some distance from us.
"A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 17" by Robert Kerr
That one is obliging.
"Matisse Picasso and Gertrude Stein" by Gertrude Stein
The Arminians wanted to leave Dort; but an order from the States-General obliged them to stay.
"The Life of the Truly Eminent and Learned Hugo Grotius" by Jean Lévesque de Burigny
Old Roy, whom they were obliged to take into confidence, was won over to it.
"Verner's Pride" by Mrs. Henry Wood
Alice was now obliged to go downstairs to acquaint her mother.
"The Rebel of the School" by Mrs. L. T. Meade
Why I am obliged to do it, you will perfectly comprehend when you have heard my story.
"Japhet, In Search Of A Father" by Frederick Marryat
Mamma does not like her to set me an example of novel-reading, so she is obliged to lock herself in her own room.
"Uncle Max" by Rosa Nouchette Carey

In poetry:

His joyous spirits rising soon,
He instantly struck up a tune:
But here we are oblig'd to tell,
As his notes rose, her spirits fell.
"The Jealous Head" by William Hutton
To John I owed great obligation,
But John unhappily thought fit To publish it to all the nation:
Sure John and I are more than quit.
"Epigram - To John I Owed Great Obligation" by Matthew Prior
I'm bound to love my friends, but yet
I sin unless I do them hate:
I am oblig'd to hate my foes,
Yet bound to love, and pray for those.
"The Believer's Riddle; or, the Mystery of Faith" by Ralph Erskine
(The mothers were of decent size,
Though not particularly tall;
But in the sketch that meets your eyes
I've been obliged to draw them small.)
"Thomas Winterbottom Hance" by William Schwenck Gilbert
"'Tis I (said one), 'bove all my race,
Am debtor chief to glorious grace."
"Nay (said another), hark, I trow,
I'm more oblig'd to grace than you."
"The Believer's Principles : Chap. V." by Ralph Erskine
And hark ye, Madam, cried the bawd,
None of your flights, your high-rope dodging;
Be civil here, or march abroad;
Oblige the 'squire, or quit the lodging.
"Chaste Florimel" by Matthew Prior

In news:

The concept obliges hundreds of factories, power plants, and re- fineries to more.
A small business owner wonders whether he is obligated to take back a former employee who returned from Iraq with an injury.
The problem for most of us is that we see social obligations as one big category.
Whether you like your walls museum-white or racy red, Marcelo Escobedo is happy to oblige.
Attract, retain and develop a workforce that includes those from multiple generations, as well as those with military obligations and various religious practices.
Do Christians have an obligation to vote.
That you didn't have a wedding the first time around does not obligate them to pay for one now.
The City of Lakewood and the Nisqually Indian Tribe have agreed to a deal that will let the tribe build a convenience store and gas station in the city and obligate the tribe to pay nearly $19,000 a year for public services.
The shooting in Arizona is the sort of thing that obligates all sides in political debates to call a timeout.
The city is under no obligation to continue coverage for the retirees, who are non-union employees.
Southeastern's trustees issue general obligation bonds.
But courtesy and obligation dictated that I put my wants aside and be a big girl about it all.
Now changes to accounting rules could compound the problem, if techniques to smooth volatility in pension obligations are eliminated, as some have threatened.
LA Dodgers 2013 Payroll Obligations.
Only nine per cent said they didn't think advisers had any such obligation.

In science:

The construction of S guarantees agreement with the “happens before” order of operations on O in H , and so the proof obligation for linearizability is only to show that S is valid for O .
Linearizable Implementations Do Not Suffice for Randomized Distributed Computation
Refinement also brings with it additional proof obligations – requiring a developer to discover properties relating to their design decisions.
Discovery of Invariants through Automated Theory Formation
This benefit comes with proof obligations (POs) – the task of proving the correctness of each refinement step.
Discovery of Invariants through Automated Theory Formation
Ideally automation should be provided to support the discovery of such properties, allowing the developer to focus on design decisions rather than analysing failed proof obligations.
Discovery of Invariants through Automated Theory Formation
When the interactions are absent, one can place two groups of particles in the same box and, consequently, one is not obliged to enlarge the size of a box together with the number of particles.
The Existence of the Thermodynamic Limit for the System of Interacting Quantum Particles in Random Media