English

Definition of ransom verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

ransom

 verb
verb
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəm//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəm//
 
Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they ransom
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəm//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəm//
 
he / she / it ransoms
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəmz//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəmz//
 
past simple ransomed
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəmd//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəmd//
 
past participle ransomed
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəmd//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəmd//
 
-ing form ransoming
BrE BrE//ˈrænsəmɪŋ//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈrænsəmɪŋ//
 
 
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ransom somebody to pay money to somebody so that they will set free the person that they are keeping as a prisoner The kidnapped children were all ransomed and returned home unharmed. Word Origin Middle English: from Old French ransoun (noun), ransouner (verb), from Latin redemptio(n-) ‘ransoming, releasing’, from redimere ‘buy back’, from re- ‘back’ + emere ‘buy’. Early use also occurred in theological contexts expressing ‘deliverance’ and ‘atonement’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: ransom