- 1Cancel or postpone the punishment of (someone, especially someone condemned to death): under the new regime, prisoners under sentence of death were reprievedMore example sentences
- The conspirators, a group of teachers and lawyers led by an educational theorist called Picornell, were condemned to death but reprieved on French insistence when peace was concluded.
- An examination of the role of the Home Office in reprieving condemned prisoners can be found in R. Chadwick's Bureaucratic Mercy: The Home Office and the Treatment of Capital Cases in Victorian Britain.
- Acquittal rates were high and infanticide was the only form of homicide for which women might be reprieved or pardoned.
- 1.1Abandon or postpone plans to close or abolish (something): the threatened pits could be reprievedMore example sentences
save, rescue, grant a stay of execution to, give a respite to• informal take off the hit list
- But now the town hall is reprieving seven of the toilets and is to spend more than £10,400 keeping them open, following a wave of protest.
- However, Hewat will not be able to make the case for reprieving the centre as it has made it clear they do not intend to be at this week's meeting.
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- 1A cancellation or postponement of a punishment: he accepted the death sentence and refused to appeal for a reprieveMore example sentences
- Official reprieves and pardons were not uncommon, and some such acts of mercy were purposely announced only when the convicted stood on the scaffold and spectators had assembled.
- The president can grant reprieves and pardons (except in the case of impeachment).
- He or she could grant pardons and reprieves, and, with the advice and consent of the Senate, make appointments and enter into treaties, subject to the approval of two-thirds of the senators present.
- 1.1A cancellation or postponement of an undesirable event: a mother who faced eviction has been given a reprieveMore example sentences
- An increased supply of rental accommodation has resulted in a welcome reprieve from spiralling rents for tenants around the country, and particularly in Dublin.
- Those who cannot afford to buy bonds, or who prefer to invest in productive endeavors, must pay in future taxes for the reprieve of not being taxed in the present.
- This may be a welcome reprieve, but taxpayers and their advisors should still consider the proposed rules when evaluating investments.
late 15th century (as the past participle repryed): from Anglo-Norman French repris, past participle of reprendre, from Latin re- 'back' + prehendere 'seize'. The insertion of -v- (16th century) remains unexplained. Sense development has undergone a reversal, from the early meaning 'send back to prison', via 'postpone a legal process', to the current sense 'rescue from impending punishment'.