1 : a period of temporary delay
2 : an interval of rest or relief
The station's meteorologist had predicted that the bad weather would continue throughout the week without respite.
"Welcome to the Garden for Good, where 30 inmates-trained as Kansas Master Gardeners-find respite from the harsh realities of life behind bars." - From an article in the Kiowa County Signal (Greensburg, Kansas), August 14, 2013
Did You Know?
Originally, beginning in the late 13th century, a respite was a delay or extension asked for or granted for a specific reason-to give someone time to deliberate on a proposal, for example. Such a respite offered an opportunity for the kind of consideration inherent in the word's etymology. "Respite" traces from the Latin term "respectus," which comes from a verb meaning, both literally and figuratively, "to turn around to look at" or "to regard." By the 14th century, we had granted "respite" the sense we use most often today-"a welcome break."
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