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First attested in 1529. Either from Middle French abolition, or directly from Latin abolitiō, from aboleō ‎(destroy).[1] Compare French abolition. See abolish.



abolition ‎(plural abolitions)

  1. The act of abolishing, or the state of being abolished; an annulling; abrogation; utter destruction; as, the abolition of slavery or the slave trade; the abolition of laws, decrees, ordinances, customs, taxes, debts, etc. [First attested around the early 16th century.][2]
  2. (historical, often capitalised, Britain, US) The ending of the slave trade or of slavery. [First attested around the early 18th century.][2]
  3. (historical, often capitalised, Australia) The ending of convict transportation. [First attested around the late 18th century.][2]
  4. (obsolete) An amnesty; a putting out of memory. [Attested from the early 17th century to the early 19th century.][2]

Usage notes[edit]

The application of this word to persons is now unusual or obsolete.



The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.


  1. ^ Elliott K. Dobbie, C. William Dunmore, Robert K. Barnhart, et al. (editors), Chambers Dictionary of Etymology (Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, 2004 [1998], ISBN 0550142304), page 3-4
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Lesley Brown (editor), The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 5th edition (Oxford University Press, 2003 [1933], ISBN 978-0-19-860575-7), page 6




abolition f ‎(plural abolitions)

  1. abolition.

External links[edit]