noun \də-ˈvrs also dī-\

: the ending of a marriage by a legal process

: a complete separation between two things

Full Definition of DIVORCE

:  the action or an instance of legally dissolving a marriage
:  separation, severance <divorce of the secular and the spiritual>

Examples of DIVORCE

  1. Since getting a divorce, she has been raising her children alone.
  2. They went through a lengthy divorce.
  3. Their marriage ended in divorce.
  4. Financial problems are a leading cause of divorce.

Origin of DIVORCE

Middle English divorse, from Anglo-French, from Latin divortium, from divertere, divortere to divert, to leave one's husband
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Legal Terms

actionable, alienable, carceral, chattel, complicity, decedent, larceny, malfeasance, modus operandi



: to legally end your marriage with (your husband or wife)

: to make or keep (something) separate


Full Definition of DIVORCE

transitive verb
a :  to end marriage with (one's spouse) by divorce <she divorced her husband>
b :  to dissolve the marriage contract between <they were divorced last year>
:  to make or keep separate :  separate <divorce church from state>
intransitive verb
:  to obtain a divorce
di·vorce·ment \-ˈvr-smənt\ noun

Examples of DIVORCE

  1. After years of unhappiness, she decided to divorce him.
  2. They both agreed it was best to divorce.
  3. Their constitution divorces church and state.

First Known Use of DIVORCE

15th century


noun \də-ˌvr-ˈsā, -ˈsē, -ˈvr-ˌ\

: a man who is divorced

Full Definition of DIVORCÉ

:  a divorced man

First Known Use of DIVORCÉ


Rhymes with DIVORCÉ

Adige, A-OK, alleyway, All Fools' Day, All Saints' Day, All Souls' Day, all the way, anyway, appliqué, Arbor Day, arrivé, atelier, attaché, back away, ballonet, bang away, Bastille Day, Beaujolais, beta ray, beurre manié, BHA, blow away, botonée, Boxing Day, breakaway, break away, Bristol Bay, bustier, by the way, cabaret, cableway, Camagüey, canapé, cap-a-pie, Cape Cod Bay, caraway, carriageway, cassoulet, castaway, cathode ray, champlevé, chansonnier, chardonnay, Charolais, chevalier, china clay, cloisonné, cog railway, colorway, Condorcet, consommé, coryphée, cosmic ray, croupier, crudités, cutaway, day-to-day, debauchee, déclassé, dégagé, degree-day, delta ray, démodé, devotee, disarray, disobey, distingué, divorcée, DNA, dollar day, double play, draw away, dress-down day, eagle ray, eightfold way, émigré, engagé, entranceway, entremets, entryway, espalier, everyday, exposé, expressway, fadeaway, fallaway, fall away, faraday, Faraday, faraway, fiancé, fiancée, fill away, fire away, flageolet, flyaway, foldaway, gal Friday, gamma ray, garde-manger, Georgian Bay, getaway, girl Friday, giveaway, give away, gratiné, gratinée, Greenaway, Groundhog Day, guillemet, Harare, hell to pay, Hemingway, hereaway, hideaway, hit the hay, HLA, holiday, holy day, Hornaday, Hudson Bay, Hugh Capet, Humboldt Bay, in a way, inter se, interplay, intraday, IPA, IRA, Ise Bay, judgment day, keep-away, kyrie, Labor Day, lackaday, latter-day, layaway, lay away, lingerie, macramé, Mandalay, manta ray, Massenet, matinee, medal play, meet halfway, MIA, Milky Way, Monterrey, Mother's Day, motorway, muscadet, mystery play, negligee, New Year's Day, New York Bay, Nicolet, night and day, Nottaway, off Broadway, Ojibwa, on the way, out of play, overlay, overplay, overstay, overweigh, Paraguay, passageway, pass away, passion play, pepper spray, Petare, photoplay, pikake, pis aller, play-by-play, plug-and-play, popinjay, potter's clay, pourparler, pousse-café, power play, present-day, protégé, protégée, pull away, put away, Put-in-Bay, Rabelais, rack railway, rainy-day, rambouillet, ratiné, recamier, recherché, reconvey, repartee, repoussé, résumé, retroussé, ricochet, right away, right-of-way, rockaway, roentgen ray, rondelet, roundelay, RNA, runaway, run away, Saguenay, salt away, San Jose, Santa Fe, São Tomé, Saturday, satyr play, semplice, Seventh-Day, severance pay, shadow play, sleepaway, sobriquet, sock away, sommelier, square away, steerageway, standaway, stowaway, straightaway, street railway, Table Bay, taboret, tarsier, taxiway, tearaway, tear away, teleplay, Tenebrae, thataway, throwaway, throw away, Thunder Bay, triple play, turn away, Udine, underlay, underpay, underplay, underway, Uruguay, velouté, Venite, vérité, vertebra, virelay, walkaway, Wang Ching-wei, waterway, wellaway, Whitsunday, workaday, working day, Yenisey, Zuider Zee


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Dissolution of a valid marriage, usually freeing the parties to remarry. In societies in which religious authority is strong and the religion holds that marriage is indissoluble (e.g., Roman Catholicism, Hinduism), divorce may be difficult and rare. In the U.S. at the beginning of the 21st century there was about one divorce for every two marriages. The rate of divorce in the U.S. is greater than it is in most other Western countries, though divorce rates climbed in those countries in the last decades of the 20th century. The most common grounds for divorce are absence from the marital home, drug or alcohol addiction, adultery, cruelty, conviction of a crime, desertion, insanity, and nonsupport. See also annulment.


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