Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

Comprehensive
Dictionary Suite
Help
Help
Help
 
   
Display options
Show syllables
Show Lookup History
Double-Click Lookup
  Show Spanish support
 
Pronunciation
Wordsmyth
  Phonics
  IPA
 
Entry formats
Standard
  Classic
 
Lookup History
hostage

hos·tage

hostage

 
pronunciation:
ha stihj
features:
Word Parts
part of speech: noun
definition: someone held prisoner by one person or group in an attempt to persuade or force another person or group to satisfy certain conditions or meet certain demands.
The police did what they could to capture the gunman without injuring the hostages.
similar words:
captive, pawn
Word Parts
The word hostage contains the following parts:
host2 Latin root that means stranger, enemy
Show wordsHide wordsExample words:
-age Latin noun-forming suffix that means act, process, or result of (the action indicated by the verb base)
Show wordsHide wordsMore about this word part:
The suffix -age attaches primarily to bases that are English verbs to form nouns. Base-final y becomes i and base-final silent e is dropped before ľage (carry + -age > carriage , store + -age > storage ) Some nouns ending in -age are loan words from French (voyage , courage ) whose bases are Latin roots.