Abdicate Definition

abdicated, abdicates, abdicating
abdicated, abdicates, abdicating
To relinquish (power or responsibility) formally.
American Heritage
To give up formally (a high office, throne, authority, etc.)
Webster's New World
To relinquish formally a high office or responsibility.
American Heritage
To surrender or repudiate (a right, responsibility, etc.)
Webster's New World

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; to fail to fulfill responsibility for. [First attested in the mid 17th century.]

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

Origin of Abdicate

  • From Latin abdicātus (“renounced”), perfect passive participle of abdicō (“renounce, reject, disclaim”), formed from ab (“away”) + dicō (“proclaim, dedicate, declare”), akin to dīcō (“say”).

    From Wiktionary

  • Latin abdicāre abdicāt- to disclaim ab- away ab–1 dicāre to proclaim deik- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • First attested in 1541.

    From Wiktionary

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