hostage ( hostages plural )
1 n-count A hostage is someone who has been captured by a person or organization and who may be killed or injured if people do not do what that person or organization demands.
2 If someone is taken hostage or is held hostage, they are captured and kept as a hostage.
take sb hostage/hold sb hostage phrase V inflects
He was taken hostage while on his first foreign assignment as a television journalist.
3 n-var If you say you are hostage to something, you mean that your freedom to take action is restricted by things that you cannot control.
N to n
With the reduction in foreign investments, the government will be even more a hostage to the whims of the international oil price...
Translation English Cobuild Collins Dictionary
captive, gage, pawn, pledge, prisoner, security, surety
English Collins Dictionary - English synonyms & Thesaurus
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"Collins Cobuild English Dictionary for Advanced Learners 4th edition published in 2003 © HarperCollins Publishers 1987, 1995, 2001, 2003 and Collins A-Z Thesaurus 1st edition first published in 1995 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995"