1 of 3


quit also quitted; quitting

transitive verb

: give up sense 1
quit a job
: give up sense 2
quit smoking
: to depart from or out of
: to leave the company of
: to make full payment of : pay up
quit a debt
: to set free : relieve, release
quit oneself of fear
: conduct, acquit
the youths quit themselves like men

intransitive verb

: to give up employment
: to cease normal, expected, or necessary action
the engine quit
: to admit defeat : give up


2 of 3


: released from obligation, charge, or penalty
especially : free


3 of 3


: the act or an instance of quitting a job

Did you know?

Is it quit or resign?

Should you quit or should you resign from your job? No matter which one you choose, it is likely that both of these actions will have the exact same effect on your future, as they are, in this sense, fairly synonymous. However, each is more likely to be found used in specific settings, so you may wish to choose your word with care. Resign is more formal, and will often be found when a person is describing relinquishing a position or office, especially if it is done in disgrace. While it would not be incorrect to say that a member of an organization's board, a king or queen, or a political leader "quit their position," it is more likely that the word resign would be employed.

Choose the Right Synonym for quit

stop, cease, quit, discontinue, desist mean to suspend or cause to suspend activity.

stop applies to action or progress or to what is operating or progressing and may imply suddenness or definiteness.

stopped at the red light

cease applies to states, conditions, or existence and may add a suggestion of gradualness and a degree of finality.

by nightfall the fighting had ceased

quit may stress either finality or abruptness in stopping or ceasing.

the engine faltered, sputtered, then quit altogether

discontinue applies to the stopping of an accustomed activity or practice.

we have discontinued the manufacture of that item

desist implies forbearance or restraint as a motive for stopping or ceasing.

desisted from further efforts to persuade them

Examples of quit in a Sentence

Verb She quit college after one semester. She decided to quit show business. He quit teaching after five years. Many workers are quitting because of poor pay. She hates her job and she's thinking about quitting. She quit smoking years ago. I wish you would quit bothering her. We're going to quit for the day. It's too hot to keep working. Adjective I am finally quit of that terrible task.
Recent Examples on the Web
According to Contiki, a travel company catering to those ages 18-35, nearly 60% of respondents to their Voice of a Generation survey had booked a trip due to a gap between jobs, or decided to take a sabbatical or quit their jobs entirely to travel. Tribune News Service, The Mercury News, 12 June 2024 Listen to this article By Matthew Boyle Ikea’s workers were quitting in droves in the US. Bloomberg, Orange County Register, 11 June 2024 Lamy, who quit his associate job at a real estate development company, wants to connect migrant workers eager to work with companies looking to hire. Syra Ortiz Blanes, Miami Herald, 10 June 2024 After just a few practices, Crawford was all in — quickly quitting the football team. Samuel O’Neal, Idaho Statesman, 7 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for quit 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'quit.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Middle English quiten, quitten, from Anglo-French quiter, from quite free of, released, from Latin quietus quiet, at rest


Middle English quite, quit, from Anglo-French

First Known Use


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2


13th century, in the meaning defined above


circa 1923, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of quit was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near quit

Cite this Entry

“Quit.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quit. Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 adjective
: released from duty, responsibility, or penalty : free
quit of debt


2 of 2 verb
quit also quitted; quitting
: to make full payment to or for : repay
quit a debt
: conduct entry 2 sense 4
the children quit themselves well in the woods
: to depart from : leave
quit the scene of the accident
: to bring to an end : abandon
: to give up (as an action or activity) for good
quit bragging
quit a job
: to admit defeat : surrender

More from Merriam-Webster on quit

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