Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Language: Old French
Origin: abondoner, from abandon 'surrendering', from a bandon 'into someone's power'

abandon

1 verb
     
a‧ban‧don1 W3 [transitive]
1 to leave someone, especially someone you are responsible for:
How could she abandon her own child?
2 to go away from a place, vehicle etc permanently, especially because the situation makes it impossible for you to stay [= leave]:
We had to abandon the car and walk the rest of the way.
Fearing further attacks, most of the population had abandoned the city.
3 to stop doing something because there are too many problems and it is impossible to continue:
The game had to be abandoned due to bad weather.
They abandoned their attempt to recapture the castle.
Because of the fog they abandoned their idea of driving.
4 to stop having a particular idea, belief, or attitude:
They were accused of abandoning their socialist principles.
Rescuers had abandoned all hope of finding any more survivors.
5

abandon yourself to something

literary to feel an emotion so strongly that you let it control you completely:
She abandoned herself to grief.
6

abandon ship

to leave a ship because it is sinking
abandonment noun [uncountable]

Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.

Explore our topic dictionary