Main definitions of ought in English

: ought1ought2

ought1

(also aught)

noun

archaic term for nought
  • ‘For aught that I can tell, it went really well, particularly after I got on to the second roll, which I used to shoot, among other things, the crowd of avid onlookers for whom the result of the match seemed to matter so much.’
  • ‘If aught else were said we should only be laughed at.’
  • ‘The old saying is probably right: you don't get aught for naught.’
  • ‘A government had better go to the extreme of toleration than to do aught that could be construed into an interference with, or to jeopardise in any degree, the common rights of its citizens.’
  • ‘On the other hand, the real ‘have nots’ are they who cannot have aught except by depriving others of it.’
  • ‘Then who are we to say aught against them, when so many of us lost the teenage years of our own children because our minds were somewhere else.’
  • ‘It's happy I am no one's said aught of wizards!’
  • ‘I wasn't thinking you meant aught by it, lad, and I'd not give two coppers for a youngster as didn't want to see his elders brought down a peg or two once in a while.’
  • ‘And tho’ I helped make many a parchment from the chosen lambs, I did all my writing practice in my wax tablet, for parchment is far too precious for aught but the practised scribe.’
  • ‘To pry for hidden metals, to smelt out riches deposited in the veins of the earth, to fold sure-handed the malleable mass - these skills will come from you, as will aught which is fashioned of silver or gold.…’
  • ‘I will go see if there be aught of worthy note about the house.’
  • ‘My Goddess has clearly said, ‘I demand aught of sacrifice.’’
  • ‘And such of your slaves as seek a writing (of emancipation), write it for them if ye are aware of aught of good in them.’
  • ‘Well, Anselmo was at least a conscientious scholar in his time, and Rafael, if tradition be worth aught, was a comely youth.’
  • ‘Now there was no plan driven by aught but fear and he spurred his horse northward, to the only place he knew as safety.’
  • ‘Never said I to them aught except what thou didst command me.’

Origin

Mid 19th century perhaps from an ought, by wrong division of a nought; compare with adder.

Pronunciation

ought

/ɔːt/

Main definitions of ought in English

: ought1ought2

ought2

pronoun

variant spelling of aught