- To relieve is to lessen physical or mental pain or to lessen someone's stress or burden.
- An example of relieve is what pain killers do to pain.
- An example of relieve is when you go to work and take over for the person during their family emergency.
transitive verbrelieved, relieving
- to ease, lighten, or reduce (pain, anxiety, etc.)
- to free (a person) from pain, discomfort, anxiety, etc.
- to restore (a part of the body, the mind, etc.) to well-being
- to lighten the pressure, stress, weight, etc. on (something)
- to lighten (pressure, stress, etc.)
- to give aid or assistance to: to relieve the poor
- to bring or send help to: to relieve a besieged city
- to set free from a burden, obligation, grievance, etc.
- to remove (a burden, etc.)
- to set free from duty or work by replacing with oneself or another: to relieve a nurse
- ☆ Baseball to serve as a relief pitcher for (another pitcher)
- to make less tedious, monotonous, etc. by being or providing a pleasing change
- to set off by contrast; make distinct or prominent
Origin of relieveMiddle English releven ; from Old French relever ; from Classical Latin relevare, to lift up again ; from re-, again + levare, to raise: see lever
transitive verbre·lieved, re·liev·ing, re·lieves
- a. To cause a lessening or alleviation of: relieved all his symptoms; relieved the tension.b. To make less tedious, monotonous, or unpleasant: Only one small candle relieved the gloom.
- To free from pain, anxiety, or distress: I was relieved by the news that they had arrived home safely.
- a. To furnish assistance or aid to: relieve the flooded region.b. To rescue from siege.
- a. To release (a person) from an obligation, restriction, or burden.b. To free from a specified duty by providing or acting as a substitute.c. Baseball To enter the game as a relief pitcher after (another pitcher).
- Informal To rob or deprive: Pickpockets relieved him of his money.
- Archaic To make prominent or effective by contrast; set off.
Origin of relieveMiddle English releven, from Old French relever, from Latin relevāre : re-, re- + levāre, to raise; see legwh- in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present relieves, present participle relieving, simple past and past participle relieved)
- To ease (a person, person's thoughts etc.) from mental distress; to stop (someone) feeling anxious or worried, to alleviate the distress of. [from 14th c.]
- I was greatly relieved by the jury's verdict.
- To ease (someone, a part of the body etc.) or give relief from physical pain or discomfort. [from 14th c.]
- To alleviate (pain, distress, mental discomfort etc.). [from 14th c.]
- To provide comfort or assistance to (someone in need, especially in poverty). [from 14th c.]
- (now rare) To raise (someone) out of danger or from (a specified difficulty etc.). [from 15th c.]
- (law) To free (someone) from debt or legal obligations; to give legal relief to. [from 15th c.]
- This shall not relieve either Party of any obligations.
- To bring military help to (a besieged town); to lift the seige on. [from 16th c.]
- To release (someone) from or of a difficulty, unwanted task, responsibility etc. [from 16th c.]
- (military, job) To free (someone) from their post, task etc. by taking their place. [from 16th c.]
- (now rare) To make (something) stand out; to make prominent, bring into relief. [from 18th c.]
- (reflexive) To go to the toilet; to defecate or urinate. [from 20th c.]