- forbearance from any indulgence of appetite, especially from the use of alcoholic beverages: total abstinence.
- any self-restraint, self-denial, or forbearance.
- Economics. the conserving of current income in order to build up capital or savings.
- the state of being without a drug, as alcohol or heroin, on which one is dependent.
Origin of abstinence
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for abstinent
Of these, 43 million are “at risk” for pregnancy—the other 19 million are abstinent or sterile or already pregnant.How Over-the-Counter Birth Control Could Screw You
November 24, 2012
Bristol Palin was not an abstinent teen—as evidenced by the 3-year-old son often seen resting on her hip.Bristol Palin’s Blog: Her Take on Gay Marriage & More
May 11, 2012
Participants were divided into four categories of drinking frequency: abstinent, moderate, hazardous, and alcohol-dependent.Is Alcohol Really Good for You?
May 16, 2011
These unfortunate creatures cannot be temperate, they must therefore be abstinent.Tobacco and Alcohol
They found him abstinent, and they made him a guzzler of firewater.The Colonial Cavalier
Maud Wilder Goodwin
Another glutton, in contrast with whom Fordyce was an abstinent, was Dr. Beauford.The Funny Side of Physic
A. D. Crabtre
They found him abstinent, and they made him a guzzler of fire water.Americana Ebrietatis
Hewson L. Peeke
It is most frequent in males, and more so in the intemperate than in the abstinent.
- the act or practice of refraining from some action or from the use of something, esp alcohol
- mainly RC Church the practice of refraining from specific kinds of food or drink, esp from meat, as an act of penance
Word Origin and History for abstinent
late 14c., from Old French abstinent (earlier astenant) "moderate, abstemious, modest," from Latin abstinentem (nominative abstinens), present participle of abstinere (see abstinence).
mid-14c., "forbearance in indulgence of the appetites," from Old French abstinence (earlier astenance), from Latin abstinentia, noun of quality from abstinentem (nominative abstinens), present participle of abstinere (see abstain). Specifically of sexual appetites from mid-14c., but also in Middle English of food, fighting, luxury.
- The act or practice of refraining from indulgence in an appetite, as for certain foods, drink, alcoholic beverages, drugs, or sex.