abandon

verb
aban·​don | \ ə-ˈban-dən How to pronounce abandon (audio) \
abandoned; abandoning; abandons

Definition of abandon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to give up to the control or influence of another person or agent
b : to give up with the intent of never again claiming a right or interest in abandon property
2 : to withdraw from often in the face of danger or encroachment abandon ship soldiers forced to abandon their position
3 : to withdraw protection, support, or help from he abandoned his family
4 : to give (oneself) over unrestrainedly abandoned himself to a life of self-indulgence
5a : to cease from maintaining, practicing, or using abandoned their native language
b : to cease intending or attempting to perform abandoned the escape

abandon

noun

Definition of abandon (Entry 2 of 2)

: a thorough yielding to natural impulses especially : enthusiasm, exuberance with reckless abandon

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Other Words from abandon

Verb

abandoner noun

Choose the Right Synonym for abandon

Verb

abandon, desert, forsake mean to leave without intending to return. abandon suggests that the thing or person left may be helpless without protection. abandoned children desert implies that the object left may be weakened but not destroyed by one's absence. a deserted town forsake suggests an action more likely to bring impoverishment or bereavement to that which is forsaken than its exposure to physical dangers. a forsaken lover

synonyms see in addition relinquish

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Noun

The sense of "abandon" defined above is a relative newcomer to the English language, dating from the early 1800s, but the noun itself is about 200 years older, having been first used in the 1600s in the sense of "the act of abandoning." The earlier sense was influenced by the verb "abandon," which was borrowed by Middle English in the 1300s from Anglo-French abandoner. The Anglo-French term in turn came from the phrase (mettre) a bandun, meaning "to hand over" or "put in someone's control." The newer sense has been more directly influenced by French abandon, which means not only "abandonment or surrender," but also "freedom from constraint."

Examples of abandon in a Sentence

Verb They abandoned the car on a back road. That house was abandoned years ago. The approaching fire forced hundreds of people to abandon their homes. The officer refused to abandon his post. The policy abandons the most vulnerable members of society. She abandoned the party not long after the election. Noun added spices to the stew with complete abandon
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Hamilton, 42, was accused of helping throw James' body into the Ohio River after the boy was killed when Gosney tried to abandon him in a Preble County park. Jordan Kellogg, The Enquirer, 4 Oct. 2021 What follows are the recollections of Tribune employees, published in the Feb. 1, 1891, edition of the paper, who worked relentlessly to save their building and produce an edition — only to abandon it in order to save their lives. Kori Rumore, chicagotribune.com, 1 Oct. 2021 Indeed, many of these employees have glimpsed a new way of living that enables them to get their work done while spending more time with their families and on other personal tasks and will have little desire to abandon it. Roger Trapp, Forbes, 29 Sep. 2021 But their failures do not provide the rest of the world with an excuse to abandon us. Aya Maria Rouhana, CNN, 21 Sep. 2021 The Dolphins ran 20 times for 71 yards on Sunday before effectively having to abandon it down, 21-0. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, 19 Sep. 2021 Hutchinson was killed in late February when Gosney attempted to abandon him her two other children, ages 9 and 7, at Rush Run Wild Life Area in Preble County, which is northwest of Middletown. Cliff Pinckard, cleveland, 17 Aug. 2021 President Joe Biden speaks about Afghanistan from the East Room of the White House, on Aug. 16, 2021.Evan Vucci / AP President Joe Biden vowed Monday not to abandon them. NBC News, 16 Aug. 2021 But Ali has picked up a gimmick only to abandon it, which is true of much of his underbaked direction here. Helen Shaw, Vulture, 9 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At the time, citizens were threatened with prosecution for tweeting, but most Nigerians largely ignored the ban and have been using the platform with abandon through virtual private networks that mask their location. Stephanie Busari And Sebastian Shukla, CNN, 25 Sep. 2021 The redshirt senior fills a 6-5 frame with 265 pounds of pure abandon and his athleticism is constantly being passed between Tatum and outside linebacker coach Nick Gentry. Evan Dudley, al, 24 Sep. 2021 But losing his voice has made Kilmer only want to tell his story — a boundless life of full-hearted abandon — all the more. Jake Coyle, Star Tribune, 14 July 2021 There’s a certain freedom that comes with stepping onto a stage — a sense of total abandon stemming from letting creative energy flow freely. Michael James Rocha, San Diego Union-Tribune, 4 July 2021 The heiress and reality-TV star grinned and threw her arms in the air in a gesture of calculated abandon. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, 25 May 2021 Seattle artist Liz Tran drips and spatters candy-colored paint and ink on wooden panels with equal measures of abandon and precision. Washington Post, 21 May 2021 Little vanishes into the ocean, Juan holding him but somehow not protecting him, only initiating him into a kind of violent abandon. New York Times, 6 May 2021 The skin-revealing slashes on Hadid’s top are a signature of Columbia’s designs, applied with reckless abandon to his slinky dresses, bike shorts, and sweaters. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 16 Aug. 2021

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1815, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for abandon

Verb

Middle English abandounen, borrowed from Anglo-French abanduner, derivative of abandun "surrender, abandonment," from the phrase a bandun "in one's power, at one's disposal," from a "at, to" (going back to Latin ad "to") + bandun "jurisdiction," going back to a Gallo-Romance derivative of Old Low Franconian *bann- "summons, command" (with -d- probably from outcomes of Germanic *bandwō "sign") — more at at entry 1, ban entry 1, banner entry 1

Noun

borrowed from French, in part derivative of abandonner "to abandon," in part going back to Old French abandon, abandun "surrender" — more at abandon entry 1

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Time Traveler for abandon

Time Traveler

The first known use of abandon was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near abandon

abampere

abandon

abandon/drop all pretense at

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Statistics for abandon

Last Updated

17 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Abandon.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abandon. Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for abandon

abandon

verb

English Language Learners Definition of abandon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to leave and never return to (someone who needs protection or help)
: to leave and never return to (something)
: to leave (a place) because of danger

abandon

noun

English Language Learners Definition of abandon (Entry 2 of 2)

: a feeling or attitude of wild or complete freedom

abandon

verb
aban·​don | \ ə-ˈban-dən How to pronounce abandon (audio) \
abandoned; abandoning

Kids Definition of abandon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to leave and never return to : give up completely They had to abandon the sinking ship.
2 : to stop having or doing Never abandon hope. … Mr. Popper had abandoned his telephoning …— Richard {amp} Florence Atwater, Mr. Popper's Penguins

Other Words from abandon

abandonment \ -​mənt \ noun

abandon

noun

Kids Definition of abandon (Entry 2 of 2)

: a feeling of complete freedom Grandpa drove with reckless abandon.

Choose the Right Synonym for abandon

Verb

abandon, desert, and forsake mean to give up completely. abandon is used when someone has no interest in what happens to the person or thing he or she has given up. She abandoned the wrecked car on the side of the road. desert is used when a person leaves something to which he or she has a duty or responsibility. He deserted his family. forsake is used when a person is leaving someone or something for which he or she once had affection. Don't forsake old friends in times of trouble.

abandon

transitive verb
aban·​don

Legal Definition of abandon

1 : to give up with the intent of never again asserting or claiming an interest in (a right or property)
2 : to disassociate oneself from or forsake in spite of a duty or responsibility to abandon one's child
3 : to renounce one's obligations and rights under abandon a contract
4 : to fail purposely to bring to completion or fruition abandon a crime abandon a lawsuit

More from Merriam-Webster on abandon

Nglish: Translation of abandon for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of abandon for Arabic Speakers

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