ab·​sen·​tee | \ ˌab-sən-ˈtē How to pronounce absentee (audio) \

Definition of absentee

: one that is absent: such as
a : a proprietor that lives away from his or her estate or business
b : one missing from work or school

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Other Words from absentee

absentee adjective

Examples of absentee in a Sentence

There were 10 sick absentees that day.
Recent Examples on the Web As the absentee voting that began on Nov. 18 boosted the Democrats' prospects, Perdue's edge slipped to around 65%-35%, until the period from Dec. 17-27, when his lead waxed to 70%. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "Georgia runoffs: A data scientist, using a blend of poll and betting numbers, sees odds favoring the Dems," 5 Jan. 2021 Some states made changes to their election procedures, such as expanding absentee voting, to accommodate voters during the coronavirus pandemic, the worst U.S. public health emergency in a century. Mary Clare Jalonick And Lisa Mascaro, chicagotribune.com, "In scathing Facebook post, GOP senator calls colleagues ‘arsonists’ over plot to challenge election, accuses Trump of bilking supporters," 31 Dec. 2020 The radical transition to unprecedented levels of mail-in balloting tested the ability of state registrars to authenticate and efficiently count ballots, which often did not meet verification standards of past absentee voting. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "What Will Historians Make of Our Annus Horribilis?," 31 Dec. 2020 This year’s unprecedented reliance on absentee voting due to COVID-19 revealed an uneven, messy, byzantine patchwork of mail-in voting rules across states that only served to confuse voters. Time, "Cory Booker and Tiffany Muller: How the Next Congress Can Improve U.S. Elections and Protect Voting Rights," 30 Dec. 2020 In Columbia County, Republicans say that Democratic gains in the presidential election were tied to the increase in no-excuse absentee voting. Aaron Zitner, WSJ, "Georgia Military Families Who Backed Biden Could Help Determine Senate Control," 29 Dec. 2020 Republicans, including the campaigns of Perdue and Loeffler, have already filed three separate lawsuits looking to restrict absentee voting ahead of the election, targeting drop boxes and seeking to strengthen signature requirements. Natalie Gontcharova, refinery29.com, "“Georgia Is The Future”: Meet The Women Working To Flip The Senate Blue," 28 Dec. 2020 Through Proposal 3, the statewide referendum that, among other things, implemented same-day registration and no-reason absentee voting, Michigan can audit tabulators statewide using risk-limiting audits. Mikhayla Dunaj, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan is conducting a post-election audit. Here's how that works," 24 Dec. 2020 Democrats on the committee questioned the move to end no-excuse absentee voting. Sudhin Thanawala, ajc, "Georgia elections chief: End no-excuse absentee voting," 23 Dec. 2020

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

1537, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for absentee

borrowed from Anglo-French abscenté "person holding property in Ireland but illegally resident in England," from past participle of absenter "to be absent," verbal derivative of absent absent entry 1

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Time Traveler for absentee

Time Traveler

The first known use of absentee was in 1537

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Statistics for absentee

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Absentee.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/absentee. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for absentee


How to pronounce absentee (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of absentee

: a person who is not present in a usual or expected place : a person who is absent


ab·​sen·​tee | \ ˌab-sən-ˈtē How to pronounce absentee (audio) \

Kids Definition of absentee

: a person who is not present


ab·​sen·​tee | \ ˌab-sən-ˈtē How to pronounce absentee (audio) \

Legal Definition of absentee

: one that is absent: as
a : a proprietor who lives away from his or her business or estate
b : a potential party to a legal action who is not present or does not have a representative present at a proceeding

Other Words from absentee

absentee adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on absentee

Nglish: Translation of absentee for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of absentee for Arabic Speakers

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