Definition of renounce in English:

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Pronunciation: /rɪˈnaʊns/


[with object]
1Formally declare one’s abandonment of (a claim, right, or possession): Isabella offered to renounce her son’s claim to the French Crown
More example sentences
  • As a consequence, Francis renounced his claims to Italy, his possession of the duchy of Burgundy and his feudal suzerainty over Flanders and Artois.
  • I am therefore prepared to renounce my claim on the strip of land in question.
  • Alexander at one time had toyed with the idea of renouncing his rights to the succession and going with his wife to live an idyllic life on the banks of the Rhine.
1.1 [no object] Law Refuse or resign a right or position, especially one as an heir or trustee: there will be forms enabling the allottee to renounce
More example sentences
  • A further argument is that if D renounces before the harm is caused, this may show that the threat of the criminal sanction has had a deterrent effect.
  • Further, there is no reason why a legatee cannot effectively renounce his entitlement to shares without executing a deed.
  • In those circumstances it could not be said that the unit holder had surrendered or renounced a beneficial interest in any particular property; merely a discretionary power had been exercised in its favour.
give up, relinquish, abandon, resign, abdicate, surrender, sign away, waive, forgo;
Law  disclaim
rare abnegate, demit
1.2Refuse to continue to recognize or abide by: these agreements were renounced after the fall of the Tsarist regime
More example sentences
  • Peru recently renounced its earlier recognition of the Court's jurisdiction.
  • There was a change in import prices, but only with the countries with which Lithuanian had to renounce its former free trade agreements, such as Ukraine.
  • He took an oath to absolutely entirely renounce all allegiance to a foreign power.
1.3Reject or abandon (a cause, bad habit, or way of life): they renounced the armed struggle he renounced alcohol completely
More example sentences
  • She now knew how reprehensible stealing the free will of others was, and she renounced her selfish ways.
  • Before renouncing the habit, the former drug czar noted that losing large sums of money on slots and video poker hadn't ‘put my family at risk.’
  • They have renounced those habits, and they too must somehow be incorporated into the new army.
repudiate, deny, discard, reject, give up, forswear, abandon, wash one's hands of, turn one's back on, have nothing more to do with, have done with;
disown, cast off, cast aside, disinherit, cut off, throw off, spurn, shun
archaic forsake
abstain from, give up, go without, do without, desist from, refrain from, swear off, keep off, eschew, reject, cease to indulge in
informal quit, leave off, pack in, kick, lay off


renounce the world

Completely withdraw from society in order to lead a more spiritually fulfilling life: she renounced the world and went to work in a leper colony
More example sentences
  • Feeling, in his youth, the desire to consecrate his life to God, by renouncing the world, he decided to become a monk on Mount Athos and set out on his journey towards the monastery.
  • Abhorring theological speculations, he did not commend renouncing the world and living the life of a recluse.
  • And does it make sense to renounce the world in search of eternal truth?
become a recluse, become a hermit, turn one's back on society, retreat, withdraw, cloister oneself, hide oneself away, shut oneself off/away, cut oneself off



Example sentences
  • Rights that can be traded are called ‘renounceable rights’, and after they have been traded, the rights are known as ‘nil-paid rights’.
  • This relief does not apply if the issue of shares in the target company consists of the issue of renounceable letters of allotment or the issue of shares to nominees.
  • We were not referred to any authority or principle justifying a conclusion that to be renounceable a right must be accrued in the sense of being both presently enforceable and indefeasible in amount.


Pronunciation: /rɪˈnaʊnsm(ə)nt/
Example sentences
  • He doesn't believe that her renouncement of the PM's post was a gimmick.
  • Statehood and any meaningful renouncement of terror and steps to prevent terror have to go hand in hand.
  • However, at his execution, he dramatically stuck his right hand in the fire, the hand with which he had falsely signed his renouncement of his beliefs, crying, ‘This hath offended!’


Pronunciation: /rɪˈnaʊnsə/
Example sentences
  • What were the circumstances that prompted these renouncers to undergo such a radical change of life?
  • The boy who gave it all up for something different, he is a legend, both as a poet and a renouncer of poetry.
  • One insightful aspect of the book is its attempt to categorize the interaction of fundamentalists with the world outside their enclave in four ways: as world conquerors, as world transformers, as world creators, and as world renouncers.


Late Middle English: from Old French renoncer, from Latin renuntiare 'protest against', from re- (expressing reversal) + nuntiare 'announce'.

  • announce from Late Middle English:

    The base of announce is Latin nuntius ‘messenger’ (also the base of nuncio (early 16th century) a papal ambassador). From the same root come annunciation (Middle English) ‘act of announcing’; denounce (Middle English) with de- having a negative sense; pronounce (Late Middle English) from pro- ‘out, forth’; renounce (Late Middle English) from re- (expressing reversal); and enunciate (mid 16th century) ‘announce clearly’ from e- (a variant of ex-) ‘out’.

Words that rhyme with renounce

announce, bounce, denounce, flounce, fluid ounce, jounce, mispronounce, ounce, pounce, pronounce, trounce

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: re|nounce

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