ought
Pronunciation
  • (British) IPA: /ɔːt/
  • (America) IPA: /ɔt/
  • (cot-caught) IPA: /ɑt/
Verb
  1. (obsolete) simple past tense of owe
    • 1526, William Tyndale, trans. Bible, Luke VII:
      There was a certayne lender, which had two detters, the one ought five hondred pence, and the other fifty.
    • 1603, Michel de Montaigne, John Florio, transl., The Essayes, […], printed at London: By Val[entine] Simmes for Edward Blount […], OCLC 946730821 ↗:
      , Folio Society, 2006, vol.1, p.182:
      witnesse Aristippus, who being urged with the affection he ought his children, as proceeding from his loynes, began to spit […].
Verb
  1. (auxiliary) Indicating duty or obligation.
    I ought to vote in the coming election.
  2. (auxiliary) Indicating advisability or prudence.
    You ought to stand back from the edge of the platform.
  3. (auxiliary) Indicating desirability.
    He ought to read the book; it was very good.
  4. (auxiliary) Indicating likelihood or probability.
    We ought to arrive by noon if we take the motorway.
Synonyms Translations Translations Translations
  • German: sollen
  • Portuguese: dever
  • Russian: сле́довать
Translations Pronoun
  1. Alternative spelling of aught; anything
    • Is it a small benefit, that I am placed there […] where I see no drunken comessations, no rebellious routs, no violent oppressions, no obscene rejoicings, nor ought else that might either vex or affright my soul?
Adverb

ought (not comparable)

  1. Alternative spelling of aught; at all, to any degree.
Noun

ought (plural oughts)

  1. A statement of what ought to be the case as contrasted with what is the case.
Noun

ought (plural oughts)

  1. Alternative spelling of aught; cipher, zero, nought.
    • Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby
      I go back at eight o'clock to-morrow morning, and have got only three — three oughts is an ought — three twos is six — sixty pound.



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