devolve
verb (devolved; devolving) Etymology: Middle English, from Latin devolvere, from de- + volvere to roll — more at voluble Date: 15th century transitive verb to pass on (as responsibility, rights, or powers) from one person or entity to another <
devolving to western Europe full responsibility for its own defenseChristopher Lane
>
intransitive verb 1. a. to pass by transmission or succession <
the estate devolved on a distant cousin
>
b. to fall or be passed usually as a responsibility or obligation <
the responsibility for breadwinning has devolved increasingly upon women — Barbara Ehrenreich
>
2. to come by or as if by flowing down <
his allegedly subversive campaigns…devolve from his belief in basic American rights — Frank Deford
>
3. to degenerate through a gradual change or evolution <
where order devolves into chaos — Johns Hopkins Magazine
>

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

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  • devolve — de‧volve [dɪˈvɒlv ǁ dɪˈvɑːlv] verb 1. [transitive] to give work, responsibility, or power to someone at a lower or more local level: • The goal of the welfare bill is to devolve power and responsibility to the states. 2. [intransitive] LAW if… …   Financial and business terms

  • devolve — de·volve /di vȯlv, välv/ vi de·volved, de·volv·ing [Medieval Latin devolvi, passive of devolvere to roll down, from Latin, from de down, away + volvere to roll] 1: to pass by transfer or succession the estate devolved to a distant cousin 2: to… …   Law dictionary

  • devolve — ► VERB 1) transfer (power) to a lower level, especially from central government to local or regional administration. 2) (devolve on/to) (of duties or responsibility) pass to (a deputy or successor). 3) (devolve on/to) Law (of property) pass from… …   English terms dictionary

  • devolve — is a verb of reviving fortunes in the age of political devolution. Its three principal uses are as follows: (1) you devolve powers, authority, etc., on or upon someone, (2) power, authority, etc., devolves on or upon someone, and (3) a right,… …   Modern English usage

  • Devolve — De*volve , v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Devolved}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Devolving}.] [L. devolvere, devolutum, to roll down; de + volvere to roll down; de + volvere to roll. See {Voluble}.] 1. To roll onward or downward; to pass on. [1913 Webster] Every… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Devolve — De*volve , v. i. To pass by transmission or succession; to be handed over or down; generally with on or upon, sometimes with to or into; as, after the general fell, the command devolved upon (or on) the next officer in rank. [1913 Webster] His… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • devolve — early 15c., to roll down, from L. devolvere to roll down, from de (see DE (Cf. de )) + volvere to roll (see VULVA (Cf. vulva)). Figurative sense of to cause to pass down is from 1520s. Related: Devolved; devolving. Also in same sense was devolute …   Etymology dictionary

  • devolve — [di välv′, divôlv′] vt. devolved, devolving [ME devolven < L devolvere, to roll down < de , down + volvere, to roll: see WALK] to transfer or pass on (duties, responsibilities, etc.) to another or others vi. 1. to pass or be transferred to… …   English World dictionary

  • devolve — de|volve [dıˈvɔlv US dıˈva:lv] v formal [Date: 1400 1500; : Latin; Origin: devolvere, from volvere to roll ] 1.) [I and T] if you devolve responsibility, power etc to a person or group at a lower level, or if it devolves on them, it is given to… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • devolve — verb devolve on/upon sb phrasal verb (transitive not in passive) formal to give work, responsibility etc to someone at a lower level: devolve sth on/upon sb: The Governor devolved the choice upon the committee. | it devolves on/upon sb: It… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • devolve — [[t]dɪvɒ̱lv[/t]] devolves, devolving, devolved V ERG If you devolve power, authority, or responsibility to a less powerful person or group, or if it devolves upon them, it is transferred to them. [V n to n] ...the need to decentralize and devolve …   English dictionary

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