- 1 (also political asylum) The protection granted by a nation to someone who has left their native country as a political refugee: she applied for asylum and was granted refugee statusMore example sentences
- In June 2004 the Home Office refused to grant him asylum and was going to send him back to Iran.
- Each year, a smaller proportion of asylum applications is being granted.
- Rape is routinely used as a weapon of war, but rape victims are rarely granted asylum.
- 2 • dated An institution offering shelter and support to people who are mentally ill: he’d been committed to an asylumMore example sentences
- Moreover, most of them languish in mental asylums and hospitals without being visited or taken care of by their relatives.
- We should have institutions and asylums where we can put those people and care for them, and where they are protected from society and society is protected from them.
- Once upon a time there were big Victorian asylums where the mentally ill were institutionalised.
late Middle English (in the sense 'place of refuge', especially for criminals): via Latin from Greek asulon 'refuge', from asulos 'inviolable', from a- 'without' + sulon 'right of seizure'. The current senses date from the 18th century.