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See more synonyms for quit on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), quit or quit·ted, quit·ting.
  1. to stop, cease, or discontinue: She quit what she was doing to help me paint the house.
  2. to depart from; leave (a place or person): They quit the city for the seashore every summer.
  3. to give up or resign; let go; relinquish: He quit his claim to the throne. She quit her job.
  4. to release one's hold of (something grasped).
  5. to acquit or conduct (oneself).
  6. to free or rid (oneself): to quit oneself of doubts.
  7. to clear (a debt); repay.
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verb (used without object), quit or quit·ted, quit·ting.
  1. to cease from doing something; stop.
  2. to give up or resign one's job or position: He keeps threatening to quit.
  3. to depart or leave.
  4. to stop trying, struggling, or the like; accept or acknowledge defeat.
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  1. released from obligation, penalty, etc.; free, clear, or rid (usually followed by of): quit of all further responsibilities.
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Origin of quit1

1175–1225; (adj.) Middle English quit(te) exempt, freed, acquitted of (< Old French quite) < Medieval Latin quittus, by-form of quītus (≫ Middle English quit(e); see quite), for Latin quiētus quiet1; (v.) Middle English quit(t)en to pay, acquit oneself < Old French quit(t)er < Medieval Latin quittāre, quiētāre to release, discharge, Late Latin quiētare to put to rest, quiet1
Related formsquit·ta·ble, adjectiveun·quit·ted, adjective
Can be confusedquiet quit quite


See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
3. surrender, release. 12. acquitted, discharged.


1, 8. start. 2. enter.


  1. any of various small tropical birds.
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Origin of quit2

1845–50; orig. Jamaican English, of uncertain origin
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

relinquish, surrender, depart, renounce, retire, go, withdraw, vacate, drop, suspend, halt, conclude, discontinue, terminate, leave, cease, abandon, blow, evacuate, abdicate

Examples from the Web for quit

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He doesn't look a bit healthy and hasn't since he quit eating breakfast.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Say, I don't expect to quit cussin' him fur another thirty days yet.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • And then Antonio offers to "quit the fine for one-half his goods."

  • When I discovered that I was unfit to hold that trust any longer, I quit.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

  • It was either stay and keep on working, with that chance, or—quit.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

British Dictionary definitions for quit


verb quits or quitting or quitted or mainly US quit
  1. (tr) to depart from; leavehe quitted the place hastily
  2. to resign; give up (a job)he quitted his job today
  3. (intr) (of a tenant) to give up occupancy of premises and leave themthey received notice to quit
  4. to desist or cease from (something or doing something); break offquit laughing
  5. (tr) to pay off (a debt); discharge or settle
  6. (tr) archaic to conduct or acquit (oneself); comport (oneself)he quits himself with great dignity
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  1. (usually predicative foll by of) free (from); released (from)he was quit of all responsibility for their safety
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Word Origin

C13: from Old French quitter, from Latin quiētus quiet; see quietus
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 quit


c.1200, "free, clear" (of debt, etc.), from Old French quite, quitte "free, clear, entire, at liberty; discharged; unmarried," from Medieval Latin quitus, quittus, from Latin quietus "free" (in Medieval Latin "free from war, debts, etc."), also "calm, resting" (see quiet (adj.)).

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c.1200, "to repay, discharge" (a debt, etc.), from Old French quiter "clear, establish one's innocence;" also transitive, "release, let go, relinquish, abandon" (12c.), from quite (see quit (adj.)).

Meaning "to reward, give reward" is mid-13c., that of "take revenge; to answer, retort" and "to acquit oneself" are late 14c. From c.1300 as "to acquit (of a charge), declare not guilty." Sense of "leave, depart" is attested from c.1400; that of "stop" (doing something) is from 1640s. Meaning "to give up, relinquish" is from mid-15c. Related: Quitted; quitting. Quitting time is from 1835.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with quit


In addition to the idiom beginning with quit

  • quite a bit
  • quit while one's ahead

also see:

  • call it quits
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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.