Abdicate Ab"di*cate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Abdicated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Abdicating}.] [L. abdicatus, p. p. of abdicare; ab + dicare to proclaim, akin to dicere to say. See {Diction}.] 1. To surrender or relinquish, as sovereign power; to withdraw definitely from filling or exercising, as a high office, station, dignity; as, to abdicate the throne, the crown, the papacy. [1913 Webster]

Note: The word abdicate was held to mean, in the case of James II., to abandon without a formal surrender. [1913 Webster]

The cross-bearers abdicated their service. --Gibbon. [1913 Webster]

2. To renounce; to relinquish; -- said of authority, a trust, duty, right, etc. [1913 Webster]

He abdicates all right to be his own governor. --Burke. [1913 Webster]

The understanding abdicates its functions. --Froude. [1913 Webster]

3. To reject; to cast off. [Obs.] --Bp. Hall. [1913 Webster]

4. (Civil Law) To disclaim and expel from the family, as a father his child; to disown; to disinherit. [1913 Webster]

Syn: To give up; quit; vacate; relinquish; forsake; abandon; resign; renounce; desert.

Usage: To {Abdicate}, {Resign}. Abdicate commonly expresses the act of a monarch in voluntary and formally yielding up sovereign authority; as, to abdicate the government. Resign is applied to the act of any person, high or low, who gives back an office or trust into the hands of him who conferred it. Thus, a minister resigns, a military officer resigns, a clerk resigns. The expression, ``The king resigned his crown,'' sometimes occurs in our later literature, implying that he held it from his people. -- There are other senses of resign which are not here brought into view. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Abdicate — Ab di*cate, v. i. To relinquish or renounce a throne, or other high office or dignity. [1913 Webster] Though a king may abdicate for his own person, he cannot abdicate for the monarchy. Burke. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • abdicate — abdicate, renounce, resign are synonymous when they are used in the sense of to give up formally or definitely a position of trust, honor, or glory, or its concomitant authority or prerogatives. Abdicate is the precise word to use when that which …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • abdicate — I verb abandon, back out, be relieved, cede, demit, drop, forego, forfeit, give the reins to, give up, hand over, hold off, leave, let go, make way for, quit one s hold, relinquish, resign, retire, stand aside, surrender, unclench, vacate office …   Law dictionary

  • abdicate — (v.) 1540s, to disown, disinherit (children), from L. abdicatus, pp. of abdicare to disown, disavow, reject (specifically abdicare magistratu renounce office ), from ab away (see AB (Cf. ab )) + dicare proclaim, from stem of dicere to speak, to… …   Etymology dictionary

  • abdicate — [v] give up a right, position, or power abandon, abjure, abnegate, bag it*, bail out*, cede, demit, drop, forgo, give up, leave, leave high and dry*, leave holding the bag*, leave in the lurch*, opt out*, quit, quitclaim, relinquish, renounce,… …   New thesaurus

  • abdicate — ► VERB 1) (of a monarch) renounce the throne. 2) fail to fulfil or undertake (a duty). DERIVATIVES abdication noun. ORIGIN Latin abdicare renounce …   English terms dictionary

  • abdicate — [ab′di kāt΄] vt., vi. abdicated, abdicating [< L abdicatus, pp. of abdicare, to deny, renounce < ab , off + dicare, to proclaim, akin to dicere, to say: see DICTION] 1. to give up formally (a high office, throne, authority, etc.) 2. to… …   English World dictionary

  • abdicate — UK [ˈæbdɪkeɪt] / US [ˈæbdɪˌkeɪt] verb Word forms abdicate : present tense I/you/we/they abdicate he/she/it abdicates present participle abdicating past tense abdicated past participle abdicated 1) [intransitive/transitive] if a king or queen… …   English dictionary

  • abdicate — verb ( cated; cating) Etymology: Latin abdicatus, past participle of abdicare, from ab + dicare to proclaim more at diction Date: 1541 transitive verb 1. to cast off ; discard …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • abdicate — verb /ˈæbdɪkeɪt/ a) To surrender, renounce or relinquish, as sovereign power; to withdraw definitely from filling or exercising, as a high office, station, dignity; as, to abdicate the throne, the crown, the papacy. Note: The word abdicate was… …   Wiktionary

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