Definition of cease in English:

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Pronunciation: /sēs/


[no object]
Bring or come to an end: the hostilities had ceased and normal life was resumed [with infinitive]: on his retirement the job will cease to exist [with object]: they were asked to cease all military activity
More example sentences
  • This behaviour ceases when parents stop hostilities and become more relaxed about the situation.
  • Now and again we would have watched a funny TV programme together and hostilities would cease.
  • We could expect that such groups would break up and cease to exist after such a failure.
come to an end, come to a halt, end, halt, stop, conclude, terminate, finish, draw to a close, be over
bring to an end, bring to a halt, end, halt, stop, conclude, terminate, finish, wind up, discontinue, suspend, break off
informal leave off



never cease to

(In hyperbolic use) do something very frequently: her exploits never cease to amaze me
More example sentences
  • ‘I never cease to be amazed at the introspection and short-sightedness of the anti-euro lobby,’ he told the Sunday Herald.
  • ‘I never cease to be amazed by the funny twists and turns the road takes when travellers are open to possibilities,’ he writes.
  • You people will never cease to amaze and amuse me.

without cease

Without stopping.
Example sentences
  • They ended a civil war which had raged almost without cease since before independence from Portugal in 1975.
  • God must love me awfully for he chasteneth me without cease.
  • They will have to be watched very closely and without cease.
continuously, incessantly, unendingly, unremittingly, without a pause, without a break, on and on


Middle English: from Old French cesser, from Latin cessare 'stop', from cedere 'to yield'.

  • cede from early 16th century:

    Cede is from French céder or Latin cedere ‘to yield, give way, go’. Cedere is a rich source of English words including abscess (mid 16th century) ‘going away’ (of the infection when it bursts); access [Middle English] ‘go to’; ancestor (Middle English) someone who went ante ‘before’; antecedent (Late Middle English) from the same base as ancestor; cease (Middle English); concede (Late Middle English) to give way completely; decease (Middle English) ‘go away’; exceed (Late Middle English) to go beyond a boundary; intercede (late 16th century) go between; predecessor (Late Middle English) one who went away before; proceed (Late Middle English) to go forward; recede (Late Middle English) ‘go back’; and succeed (Late Middle English) ‘come close after’.

Words that rhyme with cease

anis, apiece, Berenice, caprice, cassis, coulisse, crease, Dumfries, fils, fleece, geese, grease, Greece, kris, lease, Lucrece, MacNeice, Matisse, McAleese, Nice, niece, obese, peace, pelisse, police, Rees, Rhys, set piece, sublease, surcease, two-piece, underlease

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: cease

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