\ ˈsēd How to pronounce cede (audio) \
ceded; ceding

Definition of cede

transitive verb

1 : to yield or grant typically by treaty Russia ceded Alaska to the U.S. in 1867.
2 : assign, transfer ceded his stock holdings to his children

Other Words from cede

ceder noun

Do you cede or seed control?

Cede means "to yield or grant typically by treaty." Most of the verb senses of seed are concerned with planting seeds (either literal, as of plants, or figuratively, as of ideas). However, the word may also be used to mean "to schedule (tournament players or teams) so that superior ones will not meet in early rounds." If you relinquish or yield something you are ceding it, and if you are organizing the participants in a tournament you are seeding them.

Did you know?

Cede is often a formal term used in discussing territory and rights, but is also used less formally. So, for example, Spain ceded Puerto Rico to the U.S. in 1898, following the Spanish-American War, and the U.S. ceded control of the Panama Canal to Panama in 1999. Critics warn that we are ceding leadership in alternative-energy technology to China. Citizens of one European country or another are always worrying that their own country is ceding too much power to the European Union. A tennis player doesn't have any choice when she cedes her no. 1 ranking to a rival.

Examples of cede in a Sentence

Russia ceded Alaska to the U.S. in 1867. she reluctantly ceded her position as leader
Recent Examples on the Web Days later, a political shakeup saw Yemen's president cede power to a presidential council in a move backed by Saudi Arabia. Abbas Al Lawati, CNN, 25 Apr. 2022 Negotiations between Russia and Ukraine were set to resume Monday, with discussions centered on Russia’s demands for Ukraine to cede Crimea and parts of the Donbas regions in the east. Washington Post, 1 Apr. 2022 Will Amed Rosario play the bulk of his innings at shortstop, or move to left field and cede the position to Andres Gimenez (or Gabriel Arias)? Joe Noga, cleveland, 5 Apr. 2022 Though Hawaiʻi had been unified under one kingdom in 1795, the Indigenous population and the kingdom’s monarchs were under immense pressure to Westernize and cede to colonizers’ demands. Kathleen M. Wong, Smithsonian Magazine, 23 Mar. 2022 Still, the agreement is far preferable to being banned or forced to cede a majority stake to a US company, two outcomes that seemed plausible in the summer of 2020. Matt Perault, Wired, 18 Mar. 2022 Nadia heeds none of this and seems to cede control of her own story, losing Ruth in the process. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, 23 Apr. 2022 And LaVine was LaVine, dependable as ever despite an early-season thumb injury and then a lingering left knee issue, willing to cede his role as top dog during closing time to let DeRozan do his thing. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, 2 Apr. 2022 Owner Daniel Snyder also agreed to temporarily cede control of the team to his wife, Tanya. Tom Schad, USA TODAY, 27 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of cede

1743, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cede

borrowed from French or Latin; French céder, borrowed from Latin cēdere "to go, move away, withdraw, yield," perhaps, if derived from an originally transitive meaning "drive away," akin to Sanskrit sedhati "(she/he) chases away," Avestan siiazdat "will chase away"

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Last Updated

23 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Cede.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cede. Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for cede


\ ˈsēd How to pronounce cede (audio) \
ceded; ceding

Kids Definition of cede

: to give up especially by treaty The land was ceded to another country.


transitive verb
\ ˈsēd How to pronounce cede (audio) \
ceded; ceding

Legal Definition of cede

1 : to yield or grant usually by treaty
3 : to transfer (all or part of one's liability as an insurer under an insurance policy) by reinsurance to another insurer

More from Merriam-Webster on cede

Nglish: Translation of cede for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cede for Arabic Speakers


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