From Middle English troth, trothe, trouthe, trowthe, a variant of treuth, treuthe, treouthe (“allegiance, fidelity, faithfulness, loyalty; oath, pledge, promise; betrothal or marriage vow; betrothal; honour, integrity; holiness, righteousness; confidence, trust; creed, faith; fact, reality, truth”), from Old English trēowþ, trīewþ (“truth, veracity; faith, fidelity; covenant, pledge”), from Proto-Germanic *triwwiþō (“contract; promise”), equivalent to true + -th. See further at truth.
- (countable, archaic) An oath, pledge, or promise.
- 1387–1400, Geoffrey Chaucer, “The Freres Tale”, in The Canterbury Tales (in Middle English), [Westminster: William Caxton, published 1478], OCLC 230972125; republished in [William Thynne], editor, The Workes of Geffray Chaucer Newlye Printed, […], [London]: Printed by [Richard Grafton for] Iohn Reynes […], 1542, OCLC 932884868, folio xliii, verso:
- Euerich in other his trouthe laythe / For to be ſworne brethern, til they dey / And with yͤ worde they riden forth her wey / […] / Nowe by my trouth brother dere ſayd he / As I ſhal tellen the a faithful tale […]
- Each in the other his troth lay / For to be sworn brothers, till they died / And with the word they rode forth on their way / […] / Now by my troth brother dear, said he / As I shall tell you a faithful tale […]
- 1883, Howard Pyle, “The Shooting-match at Nottingham Town”, in The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood of Great Renown, in Nottinghamshire, New York, N.Y.: Printed by Charles Scribner's Sons […], OCLC 22773434, part first, page 32:
- And by my faith and troth I have a good part of a mind to have thee beaten for thine insolence!
- 1909, Daniel Bussier Shumway, transl., “Adventure XVI: How Siegfried was Slain”, in The Nibelungenlied: Translated from the Middle High German with an Introductory Sketch and Notes (The Riverside Literature Series), Boston, Mass.; New York, N.Y.: Houghton Mifflin Company […], OCLC 931794, page 131:
- Hagen of Troneg now foully broke his troth to Siegfried.
- (countable, specifically) A pledge or promise to marry someone.
- 1872 June, Mar Travers, “The Lord of Misrule”, in The Nautical Magazine for 1872: A Journal of Papers on Subjects Connected with Maritime Affairs, volume XLI (New Series), London: Simpkin, Marshall and Co., […]; and J. D. Potter, […], OCLC 877586036, pages 506–507:
- It follows, as a natural consequence, that the two who stood alone in the new faith, […] should, finally, make mutual confession of the passion that had surprised both, in the early pride of man and womanhood; should exchange rings, and plight troths where the pleasaunce joined the river, as young lovers do still probably exchange rings and plight troths, by the old Cheshire river.
- 1893, Henry James, “Collaboration”, in The Wheel of Time; Collaboration; Owen Wingrave, New York, N.Y.: Harper & Brothers publishers, OCLC 932066270, page 110:
- Vendemer’s sole fortune is his genius, and he and Paule, who confessed to an answering flame, plighted their troth like a pair of young rustics or (what comes for French people to the same thing) young Anglo-Saxons.
- (countable, specifically) The state of being thus pledged; betrothal, engagement.
- 1826, [James Fenimore Cooper], chapter XIV, in The Last of the Mohicans; a Narrative of 1757. [...] In Two Volumes, volume I, Philadelphia, Pa.: H[enry] C[harles] Carey & I[saac] Lea, Chestnut-Street, OCLC 1538219, page 248:
- I did, therefore, what an honest man should; restored the maiden her troth, and departed the country, in the service of my king.
- (countable, uncountable) Truth; something true.
- 1565, [James Calfhill], “The Preface to the Readers”, in An Avnswere to the Treatise of the Crosse: […], imprinted at London: By Henry Denham, for Lucas Harryson, OCLC 931108373; republished as Richard Gibbings, editor, An Answer to John Martiall’s Treatise of the Cross (Parker Society for the Publication of the Works of the Fathers and Early Writers of the Reformed English Church (series); 11), Cambridge: Printed at the University Press, 1846, OCLC 52817002, page 48:
- 1571 September 21,, “Cabala, sive Scrinia Sacra: Mysteries of State and Government, in Letters of Illustrious Persons and Great Ministers of State, as well Foreign and Domestick, in the Reigns of King Henry the Eighth, Queen Elizabeth, King James, and King Charles, […]”, in Henry Southern and Nicholas Harris Nicolas, editors, The Retrospective Review, and Historical and Antiquarian Magazine, volume II, part I (Second Series), London: Baldwin and Cradock […], published 1828, OCLC 458976578, page 39:
- I can̄ot lerne Banister's confession upon the racke as yet; but he was put to the racke for denying of moost manifest trothes at the first.
- 1592, “Masques: Performed before Queen Elizabeth. […]”, in John Nichols, editor, The Progresses and Public Processions of Queen Elizabeth. […] In Three Volumes, volume III, London: Printed by and for John Nichols and Son, […], published 1823, OCLC 913284979, part III (The Second Daies Woorke where the Chaplayne Maketh This Relation. [...]), page 211:
- The suddaine recouerie of my distressed Maister, whome latelie you left in a Traunce (Most excellent Princes!) hath made me at one tyme the hastie messenger of three trothes, your miracle, his mending, & my mirthe.
- (obsolete) To pledge to marry somebody.
- troth (disambiguation) on Wikipedia.Wikipedia
- troth in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.
- troth in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
- troth at OneLook Dictionary Search