re·scind | \ri-ˈsind \
rescinded; rescinding; rescinds

Definition of rescind 

transitive verb

1 : to take away : remove

2a : take back, cancel refused to rescind the order

b : to abrogate (a contract) and restore the parties to the positions they would have occupied had there been no contract

3 : to make void by action of the enacting authority or a superior authority : repeal rescind an act

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Other Words from rescind

rescinder noun
rescindment \ri-ˈsin(d)-mənt \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for rescind


abandon, abort, call, call off, cancel, cry off, drop, recall, repeal, revoke, scrap, scrub


continue, keep

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Did You Know?

Rescind and the lesser-known words exscind and prescind all come from the Latin verb scindere, which means "to cut" or "to split." Rescind was adapted from its Latin predecessor rescindere in the second half of the 16th century, and prescind (from praescindere) and exscind (from exscindere) followed in the mid-17th century. Exscind means "to cut off" or "to excise," and prescind means "to withdraw one's attention," but neither appears frequently in contemporary English. Of the three borrowings, only rescind established itself as a common English term. You might hear of someone rescinding a contract or an offer, or of a legislative body rescinding a law.

Examples of rescind in a Sentence

The enemies these efforts made for him concocted charges of disloyalty, and following a hearing before the Atomic Energy Commission in 1954, Oppenheimer's security clearance was rescinded. — Kai Bird et al., Smithsonian, Aug. 2005 But Maria convinced Leverich that she had the authority to rescind the executor's decision to appoint him as biographer. — John Lahr, New Yorker, 19 Dec. 1994 The Navy barred its personnel from his church, but he challenged the decree in federal court as a constitutional violation of freedom of religion. Eventually, the Navy rescinded its ban. — Randall Samborn, National Law Journal, 14 Jan. 1991 The navy rescinded its ban on women sailors. The company later rescinded its offer.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Since taking office, the Trump administration has moved to rescind protections for young undocumented immigrants (widely known as DREAMers) and begin taking children from their parents at the border. NBC News, "Despite claims, GOP immigration bill would not end family separation, experts say," 15 June 2018 Just a month after Seattle passed a controversial corporate head tax aimed at Amazon, the city council is poised to rescind it after facing a ferocious backlash by some of the largest businesses in town. Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, "In a fast about-face, Seattle may cave to Amazon, overturn corporate head tax," 12 June 2018 The newspaper reported Tuesday that when Sessions flew to Florida to have dinner with the President at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in March 2017, the President berated him about his decision and asked him to rescind it, a request Sessions declined. Sophie Tatum, CNN, "Giuliani says Trump won't fire Jeff Sessions before Mueller probe ends," 30 May 2018 Former President Bill Clinton rescinded it in 1993. Stephanie Armour, WSJ, "Clinics That Provide On-Site Abortions Stand to Lose Millions Under New Plan," 18 May 2018 It was actually put in place by the Reagan administration in 1988, but was only in effect for a month; it was held up in court long enough for Bill Clinton to take office and rescind it. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Trump Considering ‘Domestic Gag Rule’ to Ban Those Receiving Federal Family-Planning Funds From Mentioning Abortion Services," 11 May 2018 In a Friday vote — four days after the $2,700 dividend was approved — six majority members changed their positions and voted to rescind it, instead replacing it with $1,600. Nathaniel Herz, Anchorage Daily News, "What’s the holdup? The Alaska Legislature’s latest stalemate, explained," 1 Apr. 2018 After a few hours of awkwardly building suspense, Dakich revealed that a source had told him that the NCAA had rejected Louisville's appeal and would rescind its 2013 national championship and fine the school $15 million. Jeffrey Lee Puckett, The Courier-Journal, "Dan Dakich isn't even good at trolling Louisville fans, but he sure tries hard," 8 Mar. 2018 But it was also decried by groups such as the Anti-Defamation League, and the council came under intense pressure to rescind it. Kevin Litten,, "Singing stops New Orleans City Council meeting after 'anti-Israel' resolution is rescinded," 25 Jan. 2018

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

1579, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for rescind

Latin rescindere to annul, from re- + scindere to cut — more at shed

Latin rescindere to cut loose, annul, from re- away, back + scindere to cut, split

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Statistics for rescind

Last Updated

15 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for rescind

The first known use of rescind was in 1579

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More Definitions for rescind



English Language Learners Definition of rescind

: to end (a law, contract, agreement, etc.) officially : to say officially that (something) is no longer valid


re·scind | \ri-ˈsind \

Legal Definition of rescind 

transitive verb

1 : to take back and make void rescinded its suspension of his license

2 : to abrogate (a contract or transaction) by mutual agreement, judicial decree, or unilateral declaration because of fraud, mistake, duress, misrepresentation, illegality, a breach, or another sufficient ground with both parties restored to their positions before the contract was made — compare cancel, terminate

3 : to make void by the same or by a superior authority rescind a regulation

intransitive verb

: to rescind something (as a contract)

Other Words from rescind

rescindable \-ˈsin-də-bəl \ adjective

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lying above or upon

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