re·nege | \ ri-ˈneg also -ˈnāg , -ˈnig ; rē- \
reneged; reneging

Definition of renege 

intransitive verb

1 obsolete : to make a denial

2 : revoke

3 : to go back on a promise or commitment

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Other words from renege

reneger noun

Examples of renege in a Sentence

They had promised to pay her tuition but later reneged. my so-called best friend promised to help me move, only to renege come Saturday morning

Recent Examples on the Web

Trump has bewildered the Europeans by threatening to slap tariffs on EU steel and aluminum exports and reneging on an agreement to stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons, which the E.U. believes is vital to world security. NBC News, "'With friends like Trump, who needs enemies?' E.U. chief Tusk asks," 17 May 2018 While the deal itself contains no provisions for withdrawal, Iran has threatened to reactivate its nuclear program if the United States reneges on any of its obligations under the pact's terms. Author: Karen Deyoung, Anne Gearan, David Nakamura, Anchorage Daily News, "Trump expected dump Iran nuclear deal," 8 May 2018 Waco opens with a gunfight between the Davidians and ATF agents that extends to a long siege when Koresh reneges on a promise to surrender to the FBI. Bill Keveney, USA TODAY, "'Waco' star Taylor Kitsch on playing 'manipulative,' but not crazy Branch Davidian leader," 23 Jan. 2018 Martinez and her law partner, Megan Galicia, say ICE reneged on an agreement that the reunion of son and mother and a chance for the adults to say goodbye could take place in the ICE parking lot. Matt Campbell, kansascity, "Netflix recording of ICE officer shoving lawyer might not be used in investigation," 6 July 2018 Meghan McCain said Sadler reneged on a vow to apologize. Jonathan Allen /, NBC News, "Meghan McCain fires back at Trump," 31 May 2018 Clipper teammates rallied to Jordan's home, convinced him to renege on his deal with Dallas, ate some chicken fingers and had a good laugh. Rob Mahoney,, "After Declining His Player Option, Did DeAndre Jordan Just Pave His Way to Dallas?," 29 June 2018 North Korea has promised disarmament again and again over the past 30 years, only to renege each time after pocketing generous inducements. The Economist, "Dealing with North Korea, Trump puts showmanship first," 14 June 2018 Zarif is warning the Trump administration that pulling out from the Iran nuclear deal would undermine talks with North Korea by proving that America reneges on its promises. Washington Post, "Cheese puffs? Iran says Haley showed fabricated Houthi proof," 25 Apr. 2018

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

1548, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for renege

Medieval Latin renegare

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Statistics for renege

Last Updated

12 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for renege

The first known use of renege was in 1548

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More Definitions for renege



English Language Learners Definition of renege

: to refuse to do something that you promised or agreed to do


re·nege | \ ri-ˈnig , -ˈneg \
reneged; reneging

Kids Definition of renege

: to go back on a promise or agreement

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Comments on renege

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