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[ab-di-keyt] /ˈæb dɪˌkeɪt/
verb (used without object), abdicated, abdicating.
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), abdicated, abdicating.
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.
1535-45; < Latin abdicātus renounced (past participle of abdicāre), equivalent to ab- ab- + dicātus proclaimed (dic- (see dictum) + -ātus -ate1)
Related forms
[ab-di-kuh-buh l] /ˈæb dɪ kə bəl/ (Show IPA),
[ab-di-key-tiv, -kuh-] /ˈæb dɪˌkeɪ tɪv, -kə-/ (Show IPA),
abdicator, noun
nonabdicative, adjective
unabdicated, adjective
unabdicating, adjective
unabdicative, adjective
Can be confused
abdicate, abrogate, arrogate, derogate.
1. resign, quit. 2. abandon, repudiate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for abdicating
  • Is accomplished without losing or abdicating agency authority, responsibility, or accountability.
  • But even after abdicating, he could not escape the perils of power.
  • For the first five months after abdicating, the family lived under house arrest in their palace.
  • We aren't doing our kids any favors by abdicating responsibility.
  • We are voluntarily abdicating our leadership, our drive, to other countries.
  • Thus for some years the churches have been abdicating in their own field and putting their faith in legal restraints.
  • It's people attacking the system by abdicating from it.
  • They were also abdicating their solemn judicial responsibility not to make a bad situation worse.
  • My post was not intended to imply that you're somehow abdicating your responsibility by not addressing this particular topic.
  • By doing this, however, the board is abdicating its own decision-making authority.
British Dictionary definitions for abdicating


to renounce (a throne, power, responsibility, rights, etc), esp formally
Derived Forms
abdicable (ˈæbdɪkəbəl) adjective
abdication, noun
abdicative (æbˈdɪkətɪv) adjective
abdicator, noun
Word Origin
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
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Word Origin and History for abdicating



1540s, "to disown, disinherit (children)," from Latin abdicatus, past participle of abdicare "to disown, disavow, reject" (specifically abdicare magistratu "renounce office"), from ab- "away" (see ab-) + dicare "proclaim," from stem of dicere "to speak, to say" (see diction). Meaning "divest oneself of office" first recorded 1610s. Related: Abdicated; abdicating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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