Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “abstention”

abstention

noun uk   /æbˈsten.ʃən/ us  

abstention noun (NOT VOTING)

[C or U] the fact of not voting in favour of or against someone or something: There were high levels of abstention (from voting) in the last elections. There were ten votes in favour, six against, and three abstentions.

abstention noun (NOT DOING)

[U] formal not doing something, such as drinking alcohol or having sex: Abstention from alcohol is essential while you are taking this medication.
(Definition of abstention from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of abstention?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Word of the Day

wave

to raise your hand and move it from side to side as a way of greeting someone, telling someone to do something, or adding emphasis to an expression

Word of the Day

Come on – you can do it! Phrasal verbs with ‘come’.

by Liz Walter​,
November 19, 2014
As part of an occasional series on the tricky subject of phrasal verbs, this blog looks at ones formed with the verb ‘come’. If you are reading this blog, I’m sure you already know come from, as it is one of the first things you learn in class: I come from Scotland/Spain.

Read More 

silver splicer noun

November 17, 2014
informal a person who marries in later life Newly retired and now newlywed – rise of the ‘silver splicers’ Reaching pension age becomes a trigger to tie the knot as baby-boomers begin to redefine retirement

Read More