from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To pronounce clear of guilt or blame.
  • transitive v. To relieve of a requirement or obligation.
  • transitive v. To grant a remission of sin to.
  • transitive v. To pardon or remit (a sin).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To pass a course or test; to gain credit for a class; to qualify academically.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To set free, or release, as from some obligation, debt, or responsibility, or from the consequences of guilt or such ties as it would be sin or guilt to violate; to pronounce free
  • transitive v. To free from a penalty; to pardon; to remit (a sin); -- said of the sin or guilt.
  • transitive v. To finish; to accomplish.
  • transitive v. To resolve or explain.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To set free or release, as from some duty, obligation, or responsibility.
  • To free from the consequences or penalties attaching to actions; acquit; specifically, in eccles. language, to forgive or grant remission of sins; pronounce forgiveness of sins to.
  • To accomplish; finish.
  • To solve; resolve; explain.
  • Synonyms

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. let off the hook
  • v. grant remission of a sin to


Middle English absolven, from Latin absolvere; see absolute.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
First attested in the early 15th Century. From Middle English absolven, from Latin absolvere, present active infinitive of absolvō ("set free, acquit"), from ab ("away from") + solvō ("loosen, free, release"). (Wiktionary)



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  • That line makes me so sad.

    December 22, 2008

  • Mediocrities everywhere... I absolve you... I absolve you... I absolve you... I absolve you... I absolve you all.

    December 20, 2008