Definition of relent in English:



  • 1 Abandon or mitigate a severe or harsh attitude, especially by finally yielding to a request.

    ‘she was going to refuse his request, but relented’
    • ‘Finally she relented and on March 14, 1998, she became party president.’
    • ‘When Rachel's friends drag her drinking on a holiday party sometime in her third year she finally relents and starts drinking.’
    • ‘We explained to the guy how this was going to look, and he finally relented.’
    • ‘When the children cry for food, however, he finally relents.’
    • ‘Time often dilutes anger and passion and Hollywood began to relent in its attitude against Kazan.’
    • ‘Her dad studied her for a minute before finally relenting.’
    • ‘Finally relenting to Mrs Perez's request, she said, ‘Alright, I'll do it now.’’
    • ‘Vivian just looked at her and Annalise finally relented.’
    • ‘Finally Christine relented and allowed Debbie to at least see if a kidney match was on - it was, but things were far from done and dusted.’
    • ‘But despite the best efforts of his closest aides, it was not until two hours later that the Pope finally relented, the report said.’
    • ‘Finally relenting to the tempting rays of sun, I undressed and sat down on the towel that I had already spread out.’
    • ‘As if finally relenting, the thing moved - first only slightly, before turning and walking along the outside of the fire light.’
    • ‘The seller's emotion stays high, until the buyer finally relents.’
    • ‘He finally relented to the truth with a foolish grin.’
    • ‘She saw the look in Adonea's eye soften, and she finally relented.’
    • ‘He came back every day for a week, and I finally relented.’
    • ‘And in the name of a good cause, Ponder, who works at the paper's Colchester office, has finally relented.’
    • ‘Finally, Cathena relents and leave Eric alone with her father.’
    • ‘One driver stubbornly resists letting his girlfriend into his cancer-stricken life but finally relents and lets her do the driving.’
    • ‘Finally, she relents, replacing it within her purse.’
    change one's mind, do a u-turn, back-pedal, back down, give way, give in, capitulate, yield, accede, come round, acquiesce
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Become less severe or intense.
      ‘the rain relented’
      • ‘The mists did not relent to the light, they only fell around Nakita and the Neraks, and stayed upon them.’
      • ‘One man who might catch the eye when the rain relents to allow the game to start is Dwayne Smith.’
      • ‘But qualifying did go ahead yesterday as the rain relented to a drizzle though the track was still soaked.’
      • ‘The atmospheric storm of wind and rain relented in time for the start but Cork ran into another of Waterford's making.’
      • ‘Although the adverse weather had relented for the kick-off, earlier rain had left the Valerie Street pitch on the tacky side.’
      • ‘The rain did not relent, and even seemed to be enhanced at times as its path became more horizontal.’
      • ‘Outside, the sky rumbled, and the falling rain did not relent.’
      ease off, slacken, let up, ease, ease up, relax, abate, drop, fall off, die down, lessen, decrease, diminish, moderate, subside, weaken, tail off
      View synonyms


Late Middle English (in the sense ‘dissolve, melt’): based on Latin re- back + lentare to bend (from lentus flexible).