plight

A plight is a situation that's hard to get out of. Learning about the plight of very poor people trying rebuild their homes after a devastating earthquake might inspire you to send money to a charity.

Plight means predicament. It comes from the word for pleat, which means fold. A plight is a tough bind. You'll usually hear the word plight for groups of people or animals struggling to survive, or struggling for better lives. We talk about the plight of refugees, or the plight of sea birds after an oil spill. An old-fashioned use of plight is for pledge. If you get engaged, you give a plight of your love.

PRIMARY MEANINGS OF: plight

1
n
a situation from which extrication is difficult especially an unpleasant or trying one
2
vn
promise solemnly and formally
a solemn pledge of fidelity
FULL DEFINITIONS OF: plight
1

n a situation from which extrication is difficult especially an unpleasant or trying one

“the woeful plight of homeless people”
Synonyms:
predicament, quandary
Types:
care
a cause for feeling concern
box, corner
a predicament from which a skillful or graceful escape is impossible
hot water
a dangerous or distressing predicament
Type of:
difficulty
a condition or state of affairs almost beyond one's ability to deal with and requiring great effort to bear or overcome
2

v promise solemnly and formally

Synonyms:
pledge
Types:
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vow
make a vow; promise
guarantee, vouch
give surety or assume responsibility
covenant
enter into a covenant or formal agreement
covenant
enter into a covenant
commune, communicate
receive Communion, in the Catholic church
affiance, betroth, engage
give to in marriage
profess
take vows, as in religious order
swear
promise solemnly; take an oath
bail
secure the release of (someone) by providing security
stipulate
give a guarantee or promise of
communicate
administer Communion; in church
secure
assure payment of
confirm
administer the rite of confirmation to
bar mitzvah
confirm in the bar mitzvah ceremony, of boys in the Jewish faith
bat mitzvah
confirm in the bat mitzvah ceremony, of girls in the Jewish faith
Type of:
assure, promise
make a promise or commitment

v give to in marriage

Synonyms:
affiance, betroth, engage
Type of:
vow
make a vow; promise

n a solemn pledge of fidelity

Synonyms:
troth
Type of:
assurance, pledge
a binding commitment to do or give or refrain from something
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