Definition of refuge in English:

refuge

Line breaks: ref¦uge
Pronunciation: /ˈrɛfjuːdʒ
 
/

noun

[mass noun]
  • 1The state of being safe or sheltered from pursuit, danger, or difficulty: he was forced to take refuge in the French embassy I sought refuge in drink
    More example sentences
    • He said he accepted she was one of life's inadequates who sought refuge in drink and was prone to self-harm.
    • Angola is relatively urbanized because in the 1980s many people sought refuge in the safer urban areas.
    • This was not difficult, given that less than 15 per cent of people sought refuge in public shelters or tube stations.
  • 1.1 [count noun] A place or situation providing safety or shelter: the family came to be seen as a refuge from a harsh world
    More example sentences
    • In my younger and more vulnerable years, I believed school offered a gentle refuge from the cutthroat savagery of the working world.
    • Upland's owners bought and renovated the hotel three years ago, as a refuge from a high-powered life in the capital city.
    • For many of these young MPs the canteen is proving a refuge from the long-drawn speeches and verbal duels in the House.
    Synonyms
    shelter, protection, safety, security, asylum, sanctuary; preservation, safe keepingsanctuary, place of shelter, shelter, place of safety, haven, safe haven, sanctum, safe house, harbour, port in a storm, ark; retreat, bolt-hole, foxhole, hiding place, hideaway, hideout, fastness; Spanish querencia
  • 1.2 [count noun] An institution providing safe accommodation for women who have suffered violence from a husband or partner.
    More example sentences
    • Women are flocking to refuges and violent partners are moving back into the family home following the outlawing of temporary barring orders, according to women's aid groups.
    • For many years Bendigo-based Julie Oberin was Chair of the Women's Services Network, the peak body for women's domestic violence services, including refuges.
    • She said its aims were to encourage more women to report violent incidents in the home and to reverse the trend whereby women and children had little option but to flee to refuges and temporary accommodation.
  • 1.3 [count noun] British A traffic island.
    More example sentences
    • There, roads are generally free of cycle lanes, red or green painted patches, pedestrian refuges, traffic islands, widened pavements for cycle use and silly speed limits.
    • Traffic calming proposals included the creation of a central refuge at the west end of the village to help elderly people cross the road.
    • ‘There are likely to be central pedestrian refuges up to 1.8 metres wide,’ said planning officer Sian Watson.

Origin

late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin refugium, from Latin re- 'back' + fugere 'flee'.

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