verb res·cue \ˈres-(ˌ)kyü\

: to save (someone or something) from danger or harm


Full Definition of RESCUE

transitive verb
:  to free from confinement, danger, or evil :  save, deliver: as
a :  to take (as a prisoner) forcibly from custody
b :  to recover (as a prize) by force
c :  to deliver (as a place under siege) by armed force
res·cu·able \-ə-bəl\ adjective
rescue noun
res·cu·er noun

Examples of RESCUE

  1. The survivors were rescued by the Coast Guard.
  2. <an all-out effort to rescue a beached whale>

Origin of RESCUE

Middle English rescouen, rescuen, from Anglo-French rescure, from re- + escure to shake off, from Latin excutere, from ex- + quatere to shake
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of RESCUE

rescue, deliver, redeem, ransom, reclaim, save mean to set free from confinement or danger. rescue implies freeing from imminent danger by prompt or vigorous action <rescued the crew of a sinking ship>. deliver implies release usually of a person from confinement, temptation, slavery, or suffering <delivered his people from bondage>. redeem implies releasing from bondage or penalties by giving what is demanded or necessary <job training designed to redeem school dropouts from chronic unemployment>. ransom specifically applies to buying out of captivity <tried to ransom the kidnap victim>. reclaim suggests a bringing back to a former state or condition of someone or something abandoned or debased <reclaimed long-abandoned farms>. save may replace any of the foregoing terms; it may further imply a preserving or maintaining for usefulness or continued existence <an operation that saved my life>.


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