Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “promise”

promise

verb uk   /ˈprɒm.ɪs/ us    /ˈprɑː.mɪs/

promise verb (SAY CERTAINLY)

B1 [I or T] to tell someone that you will certainly do something: [+ to infinitive] He promised faithfully to call me every week. [+ that] The government have promised that they'll reduce taxes. [+ (that)] Promise me (that) you won't tell him. I'll have a look for some while I'm at the shops but I'm not promising anything. Can I have that book back when you've finished because I've promised it (= I have said I will give it) to Sara. [+ two objects] Her parents promised her a new car if she passed her exams. I've promised myself a long bath when I get through all this work. [+ speech] "I'll come round and see you every day," she promised. "I won't do anything dangerous." "You promise?" "I promise." "I won't have time to take you shopping this afternoon." "But you promised!"

promise verb (BE EXPECTED)

promise to be good, exciting, etc. B2 to be expected to be good, exciting, etc.: It promises to be a really exciting match.

promise

noun uk   /ˈprɒm.ɪs/ us    /ˈprɑː.mɪs/

promise noun (SAY CERTAINLY)

B1 [C] the act of saying that you will certainly do something: I'll tidy my things away tonight - and that's a promise! I'll try to get back in time, but I'm not making any promises. keep/break a promise B2 to do/not do what you said that you would do: If I make a promise, I like to keep it.

promise noun (EXPECTED)

[U] the idea that someone or something is likely to develop successfully and that people expect this to happen: His English teacher had written on his report that he showed great promise. As a child I was quite a good dancer, but I didn't fulfil my early promise.
(Definition of promise from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of promise?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “promise” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

maiden

a girl or young woman

Word of the Day

Countability – grammar codes

by Dom Glennon​​,
November 26, 2014
Advices and informations Have you ever noticed strange codes in square brackets on entries in Cambridge Dictionaries Online and wondered what they mean? These are grammar codes, giving you a brief summary of how that word behaves grammatically. More information can be obtained by hovering your cursor over the code, and there’s

Read More 

ped-text verb

November 24, 2014
to text someone while walking I’m ped-texting, I’m looking down at my phone, 75 percent of the time.

Read More