One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1A valued object deposited as a guarantee of good faith.
collateral, security, surety, guaranty, assurance, insurance, indemnity, indemnificationView synonyms
- ‘The same process, involving distraints and blockade, may be used not only in pleas begun by writ, but also in pleas begun by gage and pledge.’
- 1.1 A pledge, especially a glove, thrown down as a symbol of a challenge to fight.
Offer (an object or one's life) as a guarantee of good faith.‘a guide sent to them by the headman of this place gaged his life as a forfeit if he failed’mortgage, put up as collateral, guarantee, pawnView synonyms
Middle English: from Old French gage (noun), gager (verb), of Germanic origin; related to wage and wed.
noun & verb
- variant spelling of gauge
- another term for greengage
- ‘Thomas Rivers brought it to England where it became the seed of a worthy line of gages propagated in his nursery at Sawbridgeworth.’
- ‘For a crop of apples, pears, plums, damsons, gages or cherries, which are left outside all year round, try dwarf and pyramid fruit trees.’
Mid 19th century: from the name of Sir William Gage (1657–1727), the English botanist who introduced it to England.
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