Definitions for abstentionæbˈstɛn ʃən

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word abstention

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

ab•sten•tionæbˈstɛn ʃən(n.)

  1. an act or instance of abstaining.

Origin of abstention:

1515–25; < LL abstentiō


Princeton's WordNet

  1. abstinence, abstention(noun)

    the trait of abstaining (especially from alcohol)


  1. abstention(Noun)

    The act of abstaining; a holding aloof

  2. Origin: * First attested in 1521.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Abstention(adj)

    the act of abstaining; a holding aloof


  1. Abstention

    Abstention is a term in election procedure for when a participant in a vote either does not go to vote or, in parliamentary procedure, is present during the vote, but does not cast a ballot. Abstention must be contrasted with "blank vote", in which a voter casts a ballot willfully made invalid by marking it wrongly or by not marking anything at all. A "blank voter" has voted, although his vote may be considered a spoilt vote, depending on each legislation, while an abstaining voter hasn't voted. Both forms may or may not, depending on the circumstances, be considered to be protest vote. An abstention may be used to indicate the voting individual's ambivalence about the measure, or mild disapproval that does not rise to the level of active opposition. Abstention can also be used when someone has a certain position about an issue, but since the popular sentiment supports the opposite, it might be not be politically expedient to vote according to his or her conscience. A person may also abstain when they do not feel adequately informed about the issue at hand, or has not participated in relevant discussion. In parliamentary procedure, a member may be required to abstain in the case of a real or perceived conflict of interest.

Translations for abstention

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


the act of abstaining

At the election of the new chairman the voting was six for, three against, and two abstentions.

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