ab·​o·​li·​tion | \ ˌa-bə-ˈli-shᵊn How to pronounce abolition (audio) \

Definition of abolition

1 : the act of officially ending or stopping something : the act of abolishing something abolition of the death penalty
2 : the abolishing of slavery a proponent of abolition

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Other Words from abolition

abolitionary \ ˌa-​bə-​ˈli-​shə-​ˌner-​ē How to pronounce abolitionary (audio) , -​ˌne-​rē \ adjective

Examples of abolition in a Sentence

the abolition of a law calls for the abolition of the death penalty

Recent Examples on the Web

Socialists handed out copies of Liberation newspaper, with articles decrying corporations and calling for the abolition of insurance companies. Rachel Swan, SFChronicle.com, "Times change but politicians still turn out on Labor Day in the East Bay," 2 Sep. 2019 Maxwell noted the Civil War preserved the Union and led to the abolition of slavery — settling two of the biggest issues at the heart of the conflict. Major Garrett, CBS News, "Why Gettysburg still resonates," 23 Aug. 2019 The image of the kneeling slave was based on key symbols of the abolition movement, meant to appeal to white audiences. Adam Rasmi, Quartz, "A restored painting by 18th-century abolitionists shows the power of a political logo," 22 Aug. 2019 The ceremony was held today on Juneteenth, a holiday that commemorates the abolition of slavery in Texas on June 19, 1865. Lisa Dejong, cleveland.com, "Civil War Colored Troops veterans are added to Roll of Honor at Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument," 19 June 2019 Their nine-point platform for political reform includes the abolition of the executive presidency. The Economist, "Kazakhstan’s choreographed election goes off-script," 15 June 2019 Juneteenth, a portmanteau of the date June 19, recognizes the abolition of slavery in Texas in 1865, effectively ending the practice in the United States. Trevor Fraser, orlandosentinel.com, "Juneteenth a reason to celebrate in Orlando and Kissimmee," 12 June 2019 Even arguments for prison abolition are gaining traction, along with a skepticism of piecemeal reforms that may reinforce abusive prison systems. Dana Walters, The Conversation, "When America had an open prison – the story of Kenyon Scudder and his ‘prison without walls’," 14 June 2019 The left has called on candidates to support the abolition of the filibuster, in order to minimize the power of the opposition in the Senate. Eric Lach, The New Yorker, "Mitch McConnell Looms Larger Than Donald Trump at the First Debate," 27 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abolition.' 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 abolition

1529, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for abolition

borrowed from Middle French & Latin; Middle French abolition, borrowed from Latin abolitiōn-, abolitiō, from aboli-, variant stem of abolēre "to abolish" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns

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More Definitions for abolition


ab·​o·​li·​tion | \ ˌa-bə-ˈli-shən How to pronounce abolition (audio) \

Kids Definition of abolition

: a complete elimination of the abolition of war

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Comments on abolition

What made you want to look up abolition? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


authorized for issue (as a bond)

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