abduct

verb
ab·​duct | \ ab-ˈdəkt How to pronounce abduct (audio) , əb-; sense 2 also ˈab-ˌ\
abducted; abducting; abducts

Definition of abduct

transitive verb

1 : to seize and take away (a person) by force The girl was abducted by kidnappers.
2 : to draw or spread away (a part of the body, such as a limb or the fingers) from a position near or parallel to the median axis of the body or from the axis of a limb a muscle that abducts the arm

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Other Words from abduct

abductor \ -​ˈdək-​tər How to pronounce abductor (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for abduct

Synonyms

kidnap

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Examples of abduct in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Prosecutors said Christensen abducted her at a bus stop on June 9, 2017, then raped, tortured and killed her in his apartment in Urbana. Michael Tarm, chicagotribune.com, "Killer of U. of I. student from China offered to reveal location of her body in exchange for life sentence, defense attorneys say," 26 June 2019 Over the next several hours, the family of four was held hostage by Adrian Hardy, 35, who abducted them from their home in Port St. Lucie and took them to Fort Lauderdale, his hometown. Laurel Weibezahn, sun-sentinel.com, "Cross-dressing robbers sentenced for stick-ups," 7 June 2019 Belhaj and Boudchar say a tip-off from British intelligence helped the CIA abduct them. Jill Lawless, BostonGlobe.com, "UK apologizes for role in Libyans’ kidnapping and torture," 10 May 2018 Ravana, according to Ramayana’s basic plot, abducts Sita, the wife of prince Rama of Ayodhya. Harish C Menon, Quartz India, "Sri Lanka’s first ever satellite is named after the ultimate villain of Hindu mythology," 19 June 2019 The authorities on the mainland have even sent thugs to other jurisdictions to abduct people, including a publisher of gossipy books about the party, snatched from a car park in Hong Kong and a tycoon taken from the Four Seasons hotel in 2017. The Economist, "The rule of law in Hong Kong," 13 June 2019 Court records don’t indicate what happened to McGinnis’s stepsiblings, but two of her stepbrothers spoke to investigators and corroborated her account of being abducted and abused. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Her ‘predator’ stepfather held her captive for 19 years. A grocery store conversation changed everything.," 13 June 2019 Taglieri alleged Monasky abducted the baby and sought custody. Sabrina Eaton, cleveland.com, "U.S. Supreme Court to hear international child custody dispute from Cleveland area," 10 June 2019 The city has been shaken since 2016 by the growing reach of Chinese security forces, which have abducted dissident publishers and business executives off the streets without the legal cover of extradition proceedings. Washington Post, The Denver Post, "Hundreds of thousands in Hong Kong protest law to allow extraditions to China," 9 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abduct.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of abduct

1765, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for abduct

borrowed from Medieval Latin abdūctus, past participle of abdūcere "to draw (a limb) away from the body," going back to Latin "to lead away, carry off, remove, entice away," from ab- ab- + dūcere "to lead" — more at tow entry 1

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Statistics for abduct

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for abduct

The first known use of abduct was in 1765

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More Definitions for abduct

abduct

verb
ab·​duct | \ ab-ˈdəkt How to pronounce abduct (audio) \
abducted; abducting

Kids Definition of abduct

: to take a person away by force : kidnap

Other Words from abduct

abduction \ ab-​ˈdək-​shən \ noun
ab·​duct | \ ab-ˈdəkt, əb- also ˈab-ˌ\

Medical Definition of abduct

: to draw away (as a limb) from a position near or parallel to the median axis of the body the peroneus longus extends, abducts, and everts the foot— C. R. Bardeen also : to move (similar parts) apart abduct adjoining fingers

Other Words from abduct

abduction \ ab-​ˈdək-​shən, əb-​ How to pronounce abduction (audio) \ noun
ab·​duct | \ ab-ˈdəkt, əb- How to pronounce abduct (audio) \

Legal Definition of abduct

: to carry or lead (a person) away by threat or use of force or often by fraud also : to restrain or conceal (a person) for the purpose of preventing escape or rescue — see also kidnapping

Other Words from abduct

abductor \ -​ˈdək-​tər How to pronounce abductor (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on abduct

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with abduct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for abduct

Spanish Central: Translation of abduct

Nglish: Translation of abduct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of abduct for Arabic Speakers

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