From Middle English abetten, abette, from Old French abeter (“to entice”), from a- (“to”) + beter (“hound on, urge, to bait”), either from Middle Dutch bētan (“incite”) or from Old Norse beita (“to cause to bite, bait, incite”), from Proto-Germanic *baitijaną (“to cause to bite”), from Proto-Indo-European *bʰeyd- (“to split”). Cognate with Icelandic beita (“to set dogs on; to feed”).
- (transitive) To incite; to assist or encourage by aid or countenance in crime. [from ca. 1350–1470]
- Synonyms: instigate, foment, encourage, support
- Antonyms: baffle, confound, counteract, denounce, deter; see also Thesaurus:hinder
- 1851, Charles G. Davis, Report of the Proceedings at the Examination of Charles G. Davis, Esq., on the Charge of Aiding and Abetting in the Rescue of a Fugitive Slave, page 39:
- The Statute provides that whoever has been engaged in aiding, abetting, or assisting, directly or indirectly, is criminal.
- (transitive) To support, countenance, maintain, uphold, or aid (any good cause, opinion, or action); to maintain. [from late 16th c.]
- 1854 August 9, Henry D[avid] Thoreau, Walden; or, Life in the Woods, Boston, Mass.: Ticknor and Fields, →OCLC:
- The elements, however, abetted me in making a path through the deepest snow in the woods, for when I had once gone through the wind blew the oak leaves into my tracks, where they lodged, and by absorbing the rays of the sun melted the snow, and so not only made a dry bed for my feet, but in the night their dark line was my guide.
- 2017 September 27, David Browne, “Hugh Hefner, 'Playboy' Founder, Dead at 91”, in Rolling Stone, archived from the original on 2017-09-28:
- By the early Seventies, Playboy was selling seven million copies a month and Hefner's globe-trotting lifestyle was abetted by his private jet, the Big Bunny, that contained a circular bed, an inside disco and a wet bar.
- (obsolete, transitive) To urge on, stimulate (a person to do) something desirable. [late 14th–early 17th c.]
- (obsolete) To back up one's forecast of a doubtful issue, by staking money, etc., to bet.
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
abet (plural abets)
- (obsolete) Fraud or cunning. [mid-12th–mid-14th c.]
- (obsolete) An act of abetting; of helping; of giving aid. [from ca. 1350—1470]
- ^ Elliott K. Dobbie, C. William Dunmore, Robert K. Barnhart, et al. (editors), Chambers Dictionary of Etymology (Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, 2004 , →ISBN), page 2
- Lesley Brown, editor-in-chief; William R. Trumble and Angus Stevenson, editors (2002), “abet”, in The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historical Principles, 5th edition, Oxford; New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 4.
- ^ Elliott K. Dobbie, C. William Dunmore, Robert K. Barnhart, et al. (editors), Chambers Dictionary of Etymology (Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, 2004 , →ISBN), page 6
- “abeto”, in Aragonario, diccionario castellano–aragonés (in Spanish)
- Bal Palazios, Santiago (2002), “abet”, in Dizionario breu de a luenga aragonesa, Zaragoza, →ISBN
- An expression of doubt
- religious habit (clothing)