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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.
abstinence ab·sti·nence (āb'stə-nəns)
The act or practice of refraining from indulgence in an appetite, as for certain foods, drink, alcoholic beverages, drugs, or sex.