AskDefine | Define abolish

Dictionary Definition

abolish v : do away with; "Slavery was abolished in the mid-19th century in America and in Russia" [syn: get rid of] [ant: establish]

User Contributed Dictionary



From French abolir, which comes from Latin abolere, from ab + olere "to grow".


  • (RP) /əˈbɒlɪʃ/
  • ə-bŏl'ĭsh, /@"bQlIS/
  • ə'bolish


  1. To do away with wholly; to annul; to make void; to end a law, system, custom or institution
    Slavery was abolished in the nineteenth century.
  2. To put an end to or destroy, as a physical object; to wipe out.
    And with thy blood abolish so reproachful blot. - Spenser
    His quick instinctive hand Caught at the hilt, as to abolish him. - Tennyson


to do away with something
to destroy
  • Dutch: vernietigen
  • French: détruire
  • German: vernichten
  • Hebrew: להרוס (laharos)
  • Spanish: destrozar

Extensive Definition

Abolish is the act of formally repealing an existing practice legal means, either by making it illegal, or simply no longer allowing it to exist in any form.
Famous things that have been abolished include:
Issue that are topics of debate over their possible abolition include:
A common and usually uncontroversial act of abolition is the abolition of electoral districts during redistricting.
abolish in French: Abolition
abolish in Dutch: Abolitionisme
abolish in Portuguese: Abolição

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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