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connivance

or con·niv·ence

[kuh-nahy-vuh ns]
noun
  1. the act of conniving.
  2. Law.
    1. tacit encouragement or assent (without participation) to wrongdoing by another.
    2. the consent by a person to a spouse's conduct, especially adultery, that is later made the basis of a divorce proceeding or other complaint.
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Origin of connivance

1590–1600; earlier connivence (< F) < Latin connīventia. See connive, -ence, -ance
Related formsnon·con·niv·ance, nounnon·con·niv·ence, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for connivence

connivance

noun
  1. the act or fact of conniving
  2. law the tacit encouragement of or assent to another's wrongdoing, esp (formerly) of the petitioner in a divorce suit to the respondent's adultery
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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

Word Origin and History for connivence

n.

1590s, from Latin conniventia, from conniventem (nominative connivens), present participle of connivere (see connive). Spelling with -a- prevailed after early 18c., but is not etymological.

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connivance

n.

the main modern form of connivence (q.v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper