verb (used without object)
to soften in feeling, temper, or determination; become more mild, compassionate, or forgiving.
to become less severe; slacken: The winds relented.
verb (used with object)
Obsolete. to cause to soften in feeling, temper, or determination.
Obsolete. to cause to slacken; abate.
Obsolete. to abandon; relinquish.

1350–1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin *relentāre, equivalent to Latin re- re- + lentāre to bend, derivative of lentus flexible, viscous, slow

relentingly, adverb
nonrelenting, adjective
unrelented, adjective

1. bend, yield. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To relent
World English Dictionary
relent (rɪˈlɛnt)
1.  to change one's mind about some decided course, esp a harsh one; become more mild or amenable
2.  (of the pace or intensity of something) to slacken
3.  (of the weather) to become more mild
[C14: from re- + Latin lentāre to bend, from lentus flexible, tenacious]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

late 14c., "to melt, soften, dissolve," from re-, intensive prefix + L. lentus "slow, viscous, supple" (see lithe). Sense of "become less harsh or cruel" first recorded 1520s. The notion is probably of a hard heart melting with pity.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
He was eventually forced to relent after public demonstrations.
If anyone thinks these people are going to go away or relent, they're deranged.
We cannot relent from our enforcement of laws that keep our nation's workers
Sales dropped by a third, forcing the store owners to relent.
Related Words
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature