Definition of sequester in English:


Line breaks: se¦ques|ter
Pronunciation: /sɪˈkwɛstə


[with object]
  • 1Isolate or hide away: she is sequestered in deepest Dorset the artist sequestered himself in his studio for two years
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    • In fact, practically every story written on her lately has breathlessly played up how she sequestered herself in a cabin in the woods near Ottawa in the months leading up to making the album.
    • He then sequestered himself in a cave for nine years and sat gazing at the wall.
    • So they actually bought their own small roulette wheel, sequestered themselves in their rooms at the Pension Russe, spent hours practicing, and returned to play day after day.
    isolate oneself, hide oneself away, shut oneself away, seclude oneself, cut/shut oneself off, set oneself apart, segregate oneself; closet oneself, withdraw oneself, remove oneself, retire
  • 3 Chemistry Form a chelate or other stable compound with (an ion, atom, or molecule) so that it is no longer available for reactions: non-precipitating water softeners use complex phosphates to sequester calcium and magnesium ions (as adjective sequestering) the organic sequestering agent EDTA
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    • Such reversible, switchable metal-ion binding activity will lead to systems that can sequester metal ions while in the avid form and to systems that can exchange metal ions rapidly while in the other.
    • We observed subunit dissociation directly in excess vitamin D binding protein to sequester monomers and preclude association reactions.
    • One of the interesting properties of melanins is their ability to sequester metal ions.


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  • A general cut in government spending: if the budget deal hadn’t gone through, there would have been a sequester of at least $100 billion
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    • And what we ended up with by default was this sequester and the fiscal cliff because the parties as currently arranged, couldn't make a deal on stimulus.
    • If Congress wants to help the U.S. economy, the best thing it can do right now is implement this sequester.
    • Now Washington is less than two weeks away from austerity in the form of the sequester.


late Middle English: from Old French sequestrer or late Latin sequestrare 'commit for safekeeping', from Latin sequester 'trustee'.

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a slit made by cutting with a saw