\ 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

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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

Mayor Ron Nirenberg protected a narrow edge over Greg Brockhouse in Saturday’s mayoral runoff by maintaining turnout in his pockets of strength near San Antonio’s urban core, without ceding ground on the North Side. Luke Whyte, ExpressNews.com, "Here’s how Nirenberg narrowly won re-election as San Antonio’s mayor," 11 June 2019 Get our daily newsletter March 30th marked two years since the army ceded power to the NLD. The Economist, "After two years of civilian rule, Myanmar’s politicians are gloomy," 5 Apr. 2018 In dealing with the challenge, Mr. Xi has tried to appear conciliatory, without ceding authority. Chun Han Wong, WSJ, "Xi Jinping’s Strongman Rule Comes Under Fire as China Celebrates Deng’s Reforms," 18 Dec. 2018 By the 1990s, the situation had stabilized, with the government ceding economic control. Hanya Yanagihara, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why Luang Prabang Is the Ideal Southeast Asian City," 20 Nov. 2018 Players with some leverage may wrangle two years of security before ceding control to the team. Andrew Brandt, SI.com, "How NFL and NBA Contracts Differ, and What NFL Players Can Do to Change It," 10 July 2018 The Capitals, who have played four more games than Vegas, finished the conference finals with two shutouts, heavy checking and nearly eight periods without ceding a goal. Andrew Knoll, New York Times, "Stanley Cup Finals Preview: Surprising Teams With the Same Architect," 27 May 2018 Silva e Luna's previous comments to Bloomberg in April about the deal marked a change of tone at the defense ministry, which had been cautious about ceding control of Embraer, an industrial champion and crucial supplier of military hardware. chicagotribune.com, "Boeing-Embraer deal likely as defense fears soothed, Brazil says," 23 May 2018 Silva e Luna’s previous comments to Bloomberg in April about the deal marked a change of tone at the defense ministry, which had been cautious about ceding control of Embraer, an industrial champion and crucial supplier of military hardware. Samy Adghirni, Bloomberg.com, "Brazil Optimistic on Boeing-Embraer Deal," 23 May 2018

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.

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First Known Use of cede

1749, 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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Dictionary Entries near cede

cedar rust

cedar waxwing






Statistics for cede

Last Updated

16 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cede

The first known use of cede was in 1749

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More Definitions for cede



English Language Learners Definition of cede

formal : to give control of (something) to another person, group, government, etc.


\ 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.
\ 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

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More from Merriam-Webster on cede

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cede

Spanish Central: Translation of cede

Nglish: Translation of cede for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cede for Arabic Speakers

Comments on cede

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


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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