Also called sabbatical leave. (in a school, college, university, etc.) a year, usually every seventh, of release from normal teaching duties granted to a professor, as for study or travel.
Chiefly Biblical. a yearlong period to be observed by Jews once every seven years, during which the fields were to be left untilled and all agricultural labors were to be suspended. Lev. 25.Compare jubilee(def 6).
Origin of sabbatical year
First recorded in 1625–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
(often capitals) Bible a year during which the land was to be left uncultivated, debts annulled, etc, supposed to be observed every seventh year by the ancient Israelites according to Leviticus 25
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