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Relent definitions

Webster's 1828 Dictionary

RELENT', v.i. [L. blandus, which unites the L. blandus with lentus. The English is from re and L. lentus, gentle, pliant, slow, the primary sense of which is soft or yielding. The L. lenis is probably of the same family. See Bland.]
1. To soften; to become less rigid or hard; to give.
In some houses, sweetmeats will relent more than in others.
When op'ning buds salute the welcome day, and earth relenting feels the genial ray.
[This sense of the word is admissible in poetry, but is not in common use.]
2. To grow moist; to deliquesce; applied to salts; as the relenting of the air.
Salt of tartar - placed in a cellar, will begin to relent.
[This sense is not in use.]
3. To become less intense. [Little used.]
4. To soften in temper; to become more mild and tender; to feel compassion. [This is the usual sense of the word.]
Can you behold my tears, and not once relent?
RELENT', v.t.
1. To slacken.
And oftentimes he would relent his pace. Obs.
2. To soften; to mollify. Obs.
RELENT', pp. Dissolved. obs.
RELENT', n. Remission; stay. Obs.

WordNet (r) 3.0 (2005)

1: give in, as to influence or pressure [syn: yield, relent, soften] [ant: remain firm, stand]

Merriam Webster's

verb Etymology: Middle English, to melt, soften, from Anglo-French relenter, from re- + Latin lentare to bend, from lentus soft, pliant, slow more at lithe Date: 1526 intransitive verb 1. a. to become less severe, harsh, or strict usually from reasons of humanity b. to cease resistance ; give in 2. let up, slacken transitive verb obsolete soften, mollify Synonyms: see yield

Oxford Reference Dictionary

v.intr. 1 abandon a harsh intention. 2 yield to compassion. 3 relax one's severity; become less stern. Etymology: ME f. med.L relentare (unrecorded), formed as RE- + L lentare bend f. lentus flexible

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Relent Re*lent" (r?-l?nt"), v. i. [imp. & p. p. Relented; p. pr. & vb. n. Relenting.] [F. ralentir, fr. L. pref. re- re- + ad to + lentus pliant, flexible, slow. See Lithe.] 1. To become less rigid or hard; to yield; to dissolve; to melt; to deliquesce. [Obs.] He stirred the coals till relente gan The wax again the fire. --Chaucer. [Salt of tartar] placed in a cellar will . . . begin to relent. --Boyle. When opening buds salute the welcome day, And earth, relenting, feels the genial ray. --Pope. 2. To become less severe or intense; to become less hard, harsh, cruel, or the like; to soften in temper; to become more mild and tender; to feel compassion. Can you . . . behold My sighs and tears, and will not once relent? --Shak.

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Relent Re*lent", v. t. 1. To slacken; to abate. [Obs.] And oftentimes he would relent his pace. --Spenser. 2. To soften; to dissolve. [Obs.] 3. To mollify; to cause to be less harsh or severe. [Obs.]

Webster's 1913 Dictionary

Relent Re*lent" (r?-l?nt"), n. Stay; stop; delay. [Obs.] Nor rested till she came without relent Unto the land of Amazons. --Spenser.

Collin's Cobuild Dictionary

(relents, relenting, relented) 1. If you relent, you allow someone to do something that you had previously refused to allow them to do. Finally his mother relented and gave permission for her youngest son to marry. VERB: V 2. If bad weather relents, it improves. If the weather relents, the game will be finished today. VERB: V

Soule's Dictionary of English Synonyms

v. n. Soften (in temper), grow lenient or tender, abate severity or rigor, yield, relax, comply, feel compassion.

Moby Thesaurus

accede, accept, acquiesce, assent, be agreeable, be conservative, be moderate, be pacifistic, bend, capitulate, come round, comply, compromise, consent, die down, ease off, ebb, face the music, fall, forbear, forgive, give, give ground, give quarter, give way, go along with, have mercy upon, have pity, keep the peace, keep within bounds, keep within compass, knock under, knuckle down, knuckle under, let up, let up on, live temperately, live with it, melt, moderate, not make waves, not resist, obey, pardon, practice nonviolence, practice self-control, relax, remit, reprieve, resign, settle down, show mercy, show pity, slacken, sober down, soften, spare, strike a balance, submit, subside, succumb, swallow it, swallow the pill, take, take in sail, take it, take pity on, thaw, unbend, wane, yield


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