[ ab-di-keyt ]
/ ˈæb dɪˌkeɪt /

verb (used without object), ab·di·cat·ed, ab·di·cat·ing.

to renounce or relinquish a throne, right, power, claim, responsibility, or the like, especially in a formal manner: The aging founder of the firm decided to abdicate.

verb (used with object), ab·di·cat·ed, ab·di·cat·ing.

to give up or renounce (authority, duties, an office, etc.), especially in a voluntary, public, or formal manner: King Edward VIII of England abdicated the throne in 1936.

Origin of abdicate

1535–45; < Latin abdicātus renounced (past participle of abdicāre), equivalent to ab- ab- + dicātus proclaimed (dic- (see dictum) + -ātus -ate1)


Related forms

Can be confused

abdicate abrogate arrogate derogate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for abdicative


/ (ˈæbdɪˌkeɪt) /


to renounce (a throne, power, responsibility, rights, etc), esp formally

Derived Forms

abdicable (ˈæbdɪkəbəl), adjectiveabdication, nounabdicative (æbˈdɪkətɪv), adjectiveabdicator, noun

Word Origin for abdicate

C16: from the past participle of Latin abdicāre to proclaim away, disclaim
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