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[ri-ling-kwish] /rɪˈlɪŋ kwɪʃ/
verb (used with object)
to renounce or surrender (a possession, right, etc.):
to relinquish the throne.
to give up; put aside or desist from:
to relinquish a plan.
to let go; release:
to relinquish one's hold.
Origin of relinquish
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English relinquissen, relinquisshen < Middle French relinquiss-, long stem of relinquirLatin relinquere to leave behind, equivalent to re- re- + linquere to leave (akin to lend)
Related forms
relinquisher, noun
relinquishment, noun
nonrelinquishment, noun
unrelinquished, adjective
unrelinquishing, adjective
2. yield, cede, waive, forego, abdicate, leave, quit, forswear, desert, resign. See abandon1 . Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for relinquishment
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In return for the relinquishment Cullison had been released.

    Crooked Trails and Straight William MacLeod Raine
  • When he permits a driver to pass, there is a touch of the contemptuous in that relinquishment.

    The Pacific Triangle Sydney Greenbie
  • I understand that he purchased what is called a relinquishment.

    The Homesteader Oscar Micheaux
  • He could not only sell me a relinquishment, but could also take my filing.

    The Conquest Oscar Micheaux
  • With the relinquishment of responsibility, she appeared to grow almost cheerful.

    The Builders Ellen Glasgow
  • Is such the gain to accrue for the relinquishment of our souls?

    Rambles of a Naturalist John D. Godman
  • Will you sign a relinquishment to your claim, and trust to me that it is the best for us to do?

    The Price of the Prairie

    Margaret Hill McCarter
  • Nor did I ever hold that such a relinquishment is anything but Christian opportunity.

    The Price of the Prairie

    Margaret Hill McCarter
  • I cannot understand the relinquishment of this plan after nine years' persistence in it.

    Letters of Two Brides Honore de Balzac
British Dictionary definitions for relinquishment


verb (transitive)
to give up (a task, struggle, etc); abandon
to surrender or renounce (a claim, right, etc)
to release; let go
Derived Forms
relinquisher, noun
relinquishment, noun
Word Origin
C15: from French relinquir, from Latin relinquere to leave behind, from re- + linquere to leave
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for relinquishment



mid-15c., "desert, abandon;" late 15c., "give up, desist," from Old French relinquiss-, present participle stem of relinquir (12c.), from Latin relinquere "leave behind, forsake, abandon, give up," from re- "back" (see re-) + linquere "to leave," from PIE *linkw-, from root *leikw- "to leave behind" (cf. Sanskrit reknas "inheritance, wealth," rinakti "leaves;" Greek leipein "to leave;" Gothic leihvan, Old English lænan "to lend;" Old High German lihan "to borrow;" Old Norse lan "loan"). Related: Relinquished; relinquishing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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