hostage
noun Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French, from hoste Date: 13th century 1. a. a person held by one party in a conflict as a pledge that promises will be kept or terms met by the other party b. a person taken by force to secure the taker's demands 2. one that is involuntarily controlled by an outside influence

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • hostage — ► NOUN ▪ a person seized or held in order to induce others to comply with a demand or condition. ● a hostage to fortune Cf. ↑a hostage to fortune ORIGIN Old French, from Latin obsidatus the state of being a hostage , from obses hostage …   English terms dictionary

  • Hostage — Hos tage, n. [OE. hostage, OF. hostage, ostage, F. [^o]tage, LL. hostaticus, ostaticum, for hospitaticum, fr. L. hospes guest, host. The first meaning is, the state of a guest, hospitality; hence, the state of a hostage (treated as a guest); and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • hostage — late 13c., from O.Fr. hostage person given as security or hostage (12c., Mod.Fr. ôtage), either from hoste guest (see HOST (Cf. host) (1)) via notion of a lodger held by a landlord as security, or from L.L. obsidanus condition of being held as… …   Etymology dictionary

  • hostage — I noun bond, captive, collateral, guarantee, internee, obses, pledge, political prisoner, prisoner, real security, security associated concepts: false imprisonment, kidnapping, ransom II index …   Law dictionary

  • hostage — [häs′tij] n. [ME < OFr < hoste: see HOST2] 1. a person given as a pledge, or taken prisoner as by an enemy or terrorist, until certain conditions are met 2. Obs. the state of being a hostage SYN. PLEDGE give hostages to fortune to get and… …   English World dictionary

  • hostage — pawn, *pledge, earnest, token Analogous words: surety, security, *guarantee, guaranty …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • hostage — [n] person held captive until captor’s demand is met captive, earnest, guaranty, pawn, pledge, prisoner, sacrificial lamb*, scapegoat*, security, surety, token, victim; concepts 359,423 Ant. captor …   New thesaurus

  • hostage — Hostage, voyez Ostage …   Thresor de la langue françoyse

  • Hostage — A hostage is a person or entity which is held by a captor. The original definition meant that this was handed over by one of two belligerent parties to the other or seized as security for the carrying out of an agreement, or as a preventive… …   Wikipedia

  • hostage — [[t]hɒ̱stɪʤ[/t]] ♦♦ hostages 1) N COUNT A hostage is someone who has been captured by a person or organization and who may be killed or injured if people do not do what that person or organization demands. It is hopeful that two hostages will be… …   English dictionary

  • hostage */ — UK [ˈhɒstɪdʒ] / US [ˈhɑstɪdʒ] noun [countable] Word forms hostage : singular hostage plural hostages a person who is the prisoner of someone who threatens to kill them if they do not get what they want The President is making every effort to… …   English dictionary

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