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verb aban·don \ə-ˈban-dən\

Simple Definition of abandon

  • : to leave and never return to (someone who needs protection or help)

  • : to leave and never return to (something)

  • : to leave (a place) because of danger

Full Definition of abandon

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to give up to the control or influence of another person or agent b :  to give up with the intent of never again claiming a right or interest in <abandon property>

  3. 2 :  to withdraw from often in the face of danger or encroachment <abandon ship>

  4. 3 :  to withdraw protection, support, or help from <he abandoned his family>

  5. 4 :  to give (oneself) over unrestrainedly

  6. 5 a :  to cease from maintaining, practicing, or using <abandoned their native language> b :  to cease intending or attempting to perform <abandoned the escape>

aban·don·er noun
aban·don·mentplay \-dən-mənt\ noun

Examples of abandon

  1. They abandoned the car on a back road.

  2. That house was abandoned years ago.

  3. The approaching fire forced hundreds of people to abandon their homes.

  4. The officer refused to abandon his post.

  5. The policy abandons the most vulnerable members of society.

  6. She abandoned the party not long after the election.

Origin of abandon

Middle English abandounen, from Anglo-French abanduner, from (mettre) a bandun to hand over, put in someone's control

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of abandon

abandon, desert, forsake mean to leave without intending to return. abandon suggests that the thing or person left may be helpless without protection <abandoned children>. desert implies that the object left may be weakened but not destroyed by one's absence <a deserted town>. forsake suggests an action more likely to bring impoverishment or bereavement to that which is forsaken than its exposure to physical dangers <a forsaken lover>.

synonyms see in addition relinquish



noun aban·don

Simple Definition of abandon

  • : a feeling or attitude of wild or complete freedom

Full Definition of abandon

  1. :  a thorough yielding to natural impulses; especially :  enthusiasm, exuberance <with reckless abandon>

Seen and Heard

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February 10, 2016

to put in good humor

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