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(Greek, elleipsis, elleipo, elleipein; Latin, ellipsis: abandon, to leave [behind]; fail; lack, lacking; be wanting)
(Latin: to leave, to abandon)
Word Entries at Get Words: “abandon
abandon (uh BAN duhn) (verb), abandons; abandoned (uh BAN duhn'd); abandoning
1. To leave behind, to forsake, or to relinquish: Lucinda abandoned her newborn boy on the doorstep of a family in a better part town in hopes that he would have a better life there than he would with her.

Abandon and its past tense form, abandoned, are words of wide significance, indicating the complete giving up or withdrawal from people or things of any kind.

To abandon implies a previous association with responsibility for or control of something; so, a person may abandon or forsake, a house, friends, or even a family.

2. To desert, to give up, or to leave: The captain shouted to the crew, "Abandon ship!"
3. To discontinue, to quit, or to stop trying: The scientist abandoned his research because of a lack of funds.
4. Etymology: from the Old French phrase laisser a bandon, "to relinquish to another person's control".
This entry is located in the following unit: English Words in Action, Group A (page 1)
abandon, plus synonyms
Abandon and related synonyms: abdicate, abjure, cast off, cease, cede, depart from, desert, discontinue, forgo, forsake, forswear, give up, leave, quit, recant, relinquish, renounce, repudiate, resign, retire from, retract, surrender, vacate, withdraw from.

Abandon is a word of wide significance, applying to people or things of all kinds and a variety of situations.

While related words abdicate and resign apply to an office, authority, or power; cede to territorial possessions; surrender, especially to a military force, and more generally to any demand, claim, passion, etc.

Quit carries an idea of suddenness or abruptness not necessarily implied in abandon, and it may not have the same suggestion of finality. The king abdicates his throne, cedes his territory, deserts his followers, renounces his religion, relinquishes his titles, abandons his designs.

A cowardly officer deserts his ship; the helpless passengers abandon it. We quit business, give up property, resign office, abandon a habit or a trust.

Relinquish commonly implies reluctance; the fainting hand relinquishes its grasp; the creditor relinquishes his claim.

Abandon implies previous association with responsibility for or control of; forsake implies previous association with an inclination or attachment, real or assumed; a man may abandon or forsake a house or friends; he abandons an enterprise; and he forsakes God.

Abandon is applied to both good and evil actions; a thief abandons his designs, a man his principles. Forsake, like abandon, may be used either in the favorable or unfavorable sense; desert is always unfavorable, involving a breach of duty, except when referring to localities; such as, "The Deserted Village".

While a monarch abdicates, a president or other elected or appointed officer resigns. It was held that James II abdicated his throne by deserting it.

This entry is located in the following unit: Synonyms with Interactive Examples (page 1)