Definition of divorce in US English:

divorce

noun

  • 1The legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other competent body.

    ‘her divorce from her first husband’
    ‘one in three marriages ends in divorce’
    as modifier ‘divorce proceedings’
    • ‘Then engage a lawyer and decide whether or not you want separate maintenance or a divorce.’
    • ‘Each selfish parent wanted more from the divorce than the other received.’
    • ‘When these terminals were first introduced to two western provinces, there was a marked increase in bankruptcies, divorces and suicides.’
    • ‘Marriage wasn't an option for them yet, this wasn't the era of a quickie divorce.’
    • ‘Once their parents' divorce was final Pierre was thrown out of the country.’
    • ‘I find that the retainer was always simply to obtain a speedy divorce.’
    • ‘When we deal with divorces, our closing advice is always: ‘In the future, if you remarry, you should continue a prenup.’’
    • ‘But divorce is still not easy when one spouse objects to dissolving the marriage.’
    • ‘It gives property rights in case the partnership is dissolved in divorce.’
    • ‘The rise of no-fault, unilateral divorce does not trouble the Sisterhood.’
    • ‘Now unless you get a divorce from the previous husband you should not enter into a new contract.’
    • ‘She also added that she was finally going to get a divorce from her husband.’
    • ‘Additionally, civil unions can be dissolved much like divorce - still a necessary out even among same sex couples.’
    • ‘Secondly, with respect to married people, if the marriage was dissolved by divorce after the will was witnessed, the will is void.’
    • ‘He was to open talking about his parents' messy divorce and the custody battles.’
    • ‘A similar story emerges when considering how parental divorce affects the marital stability of adult offspring.’
    • ‘In cases when officials ask for a divorce, will the supervisory departments ignore the Marriage Law and interfere?’
    • ‘He has had two gossip-fest divorces and an awkward bankruptcy.’
    • ‘Facing having to pay out a hefty divorce settlement, he had the motive.’
    • ‘In the last two weeks we've had animals brought as a result of five divorces, four separations and six repossessions.’
    dissolution, annulment, official separation, judicial separation, separation, disunion, break-up, split, split-up, severance, rupture, breach, parting
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    1. 1.1 A legal decree dissolving a marriage.
      • ‘He will be required to pay alimony only if the judge orders him to do so as part of the divorce decree.’
      • ‘Is there an age when court-ordered child support ends if no date was indicated in the divorce decree?’
      • ‘Brussels II has therefore altered in the most radical fashion the basis on which decrees of divorce are recognised in Ireland.’
      • ‘The easiest way to change your name back is through your divorce decree.’
      • ‘First of all, when granting a divorce decree, all the judges must instruct parents to be meaningfully involved with child care.’
      • ‘In 1992 she and Charles became formally separated and their divorce was decreed in 1996.’
      • ‘It was decreed that after her divorce Diana, too, was no longer HRH.’
      • ‘While you might expect a decree of divorce to remove your entitlement to claim any widow's or widower's pension entitlements, this is not the case.’
      • ‘She got a divorce decree to legally end her previous marriage last Friday and went to the Embassy on Monday thinking she had everything in order.’
      • ‘In order for a court to grant a decree of divorce, spouses must have lived apart for more than four years.’
      • ‘And a tough argument was made even harder to win by the language of the divorce decree Freer had signed.’
      • ‘Up until the time of Jesus, Jews had been allowed to obtain a decree of divorce fairly simply.’
      • ‘The husband sought a decree of divorce and access to his youngest son.’
      • ‘Waiting for the divorce decree to become final, each pines for the other, but neither will admit it.’
      • ‘It will be observed that he said nothing at all about wanting to pursue his crave for a decree of divorce against the defender.’
      • ‘A dependent adult supplement is no longer available on obtaining a decree of divorce.’
      • ‘Unilateral divorce dissolves not only marriage but private life.’
      • ‘Things began to fall apart in their marriage, however, and Agnes filed for and received a divorce in 1861.’
      • ‘This is required regardless of the terms of a divorce decree or separation agreement.’
      • ‘Saudi Arabia allows men to receive a divorce on request, while women must win a legal decision for the right.’
    2. 1.2in singular A separation between things which were or ought to be connected.
      ‘the bitter divorce between the company and its largest shareholder’
      • ‘This is because of the divorce between religion and spirituality.’
      • ‘It effected a complete divorce between theory and observation.’
      • ‘The result is an unhappy divorce between student and school which is a grotesque travesty of all that the IBO stands for.’
      • ‘He believes that there is a divorce between the replicators - our genes - and the organisms that carry them.’
      • ‘This is yet another divorce between the leaders and the people.’
      • ‘One of the consistent paradoxes of European integration has been an increasing divorce between politics and policy in the EC.’
      • ‘And finally, they contributed a specifically Christian objection to any divorce between expediency and the moral realm.’
      • ‘Why can't there be a velvet divorce between the regions, a la Czechoslovakia?’
      • ‘The poll was just one of many signs of the divorce between business and the judicial system.’
      • ‘In addition, they visit neighboring nests, where they attempt to remove nestlings to induce divorce between the female and the male nest owner.’
      • ‘The divorce between the people and those who rule them can be blamed on the rise of such a managerial society in America and in the West.’
      • ‘But in the divorce between official policies and popular feelings there was another element as well, more social than political.’
      • ‘The other thing that I think is important is this is really the culmination of what's been kind of a long, drawn out divorce between Ted and the company.’
      • ‘It was the fateful divorce between the sacred and the secular.’
      • ‘This is a bold divorce between mathematics and the empirical sciences.’
      • ‘This does not necessarily imply a divorce between poetry and the conditions of life.’
      • ‘Perhaps, when the imminent divorce between Disney and the Weinsteins goes through, something will happen.’
      • ‘Consequently nowhere else has the divorce between the working class and its old institutions taken a more finished form.’
      • ‘For years, Pope John Paul II has rejected this kind of absurd divorce between political morality and individual moral growth.’
      • ‘The divorce between Williams and BMW is imminent at the end of this season.’
      separation, division, severance, split, partition, disunity, disunion, distance, estrangement, alienation
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verb

[with object]
  • 1Legally dissolve one's marriage with (someone)

    no object ‘they divorced eight years later’
    ‘he divorced his first wife after 10 months’
    ‘a divorced couple’
    • ‘His parents had this agreement legally voided and constantly put pressure on him to divorce her.’
    • ‘After his conviction his wife Margaret divorced him, remarried and moved away.’
    • ‘The Lebanese husband was very angry and said to his wife ‘I divorce you’ three times in public.’
    • ‘But Asif's parents pressurised him to divorce her within a few months of marriage.’
    • ‘In fact Remak's wife divorced him which almost certainly made his position impossible.’
    • ‘This culminated in a late night call from one A-list director who asked the producer to inform his wife that he was divorcing her.’
    • ‘My wife is divorcing me, so that's February and March ruined.’
    • ‘If a man repeats three times to his wife, ‘I divorce you,’ the couple is considered divorced.’
    • ‘His wife divorced him for unreasonable behaviour and his mother is schizophrenic.’
    • ‘The critics have skewered him, his wife is divorcing him, and the studio wants to fire him.’
    • ‘Goebbels was a notorious womaniser and his wife wanted to divorce him after one liaison too many.’
    • ‘His wife had let him divorce her but still called him Normie, still managed to distract him when the phone rang.’
    • ‘He was also under personal pressure as his wife wanted to divorce him.’
    • ‘A man texts his wife to say he divorces her; it is validated in court.’
    • ‘His wife, Sheryl, divorced him because he was too fat, didn't work out and would not stop eating junk food.’
    • ‘There had been matrimonial difficulties and Buxton told his wife that if she was going to divorce him there ‘didn't appear to be any point in carrying on’.’
    • ‘So if you hear about divorce, it'll be my wife divorcing me.’
    • ‘Islamic law allows divorce when the man tells the wife three times that he divorces her.’
    • ‘In no way a husband has been authorized to take back the dower money from his wife in case he divorces her.’
    • ‘Your children will inevitably suffer if you choose to divorce her and go for a second marriage.’
    split up, split up with, end one's marriage, end one's marriage to, get a divorce, get a divorce from, separate, separate from, part, part from, split, split from, break up, break up with, part company, part company with, dissolve one's marriage, dissolve one's marriage to, annul one's marriage, annul one's marriage to
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    1. 1.1 Separate or dissociate (something) from something else.
      ‘we knew how to divorce an issue from an individual’
      • ‘As we have already seen, our Western calendar months are divorced from the Moon.’
      • ‘But the plot was largely divorced from character development or historical context.’
      • ‘Nor has most global commercial activity been wholly divorced from territorial geography.’
      • ‘But it is a mistake to divorce the arts from the political and social conditions, like who runs the organisations, and who gets the grants.’
      • ‘Good women divorce the body and the head in an attempt to control them and thus must always suffer.’
      • ‘Is Howe's aim to divorce sound and sense or to merge them?’
      • ‘That is because the third party liability cover is divorced from the sea and all things maritime.’
      • ‘This would effectively divorce cladistic biogeography from the inference of causal processes.’
      • ‘The female form is never divorced from personality, fragility, a sense of humour.’
      • ‘He married German record engineer Renata Blaukl in 1984, but after that ended in divorce it was revealed that the star was in fact gay.’
      • ‘It also defies belief that the Law proposes that rents are divorced from the ability to pay.’
      • ‘You know, you can't divorce politics from any of this up here.’
      • ‘However, it would be artificial completely to divorce these separate steps, one from the other.’
      • ‘Is it possible to divorce the profit motive from the job?’
      • ‘But this increased security awareness is in large measure being divorced from politics.’
      • ‘In doing so he is not only separating his party from his church, but is divorcing his church from the wider Christian community.’
      • ‘And it is impossible to divorce the Incas from the national dish Anticuchos de Res - small pieces of beef heart, marinated and grilled on skewers.’
      • ‘So do I believe that safety is somehow divorced from this general cloud of clowning?’
      • ‘‘It's quite another thing to divorce the lifestyle that you wanted to have,’ she quips, leaning into the refrigerator.’
      • ‘They expected to get away with a plain denial of history rather than a mere insistence on divorcing history from politics.’
      separate, disconnect, divide, disunite, sever, disjoin, split, dissociate, detach, isolate, alienate, set apart, keep apart, cut off
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2divorce oneself from Distance or dissociate oneself from (something)
      ‘he wanted to divorce himself from all contact with the syndicate’
      • ‘As Gannon himself put it, ‘How are you going to work with people who seem to have divorced themselves from reality?’’
      • ‘It's what's in your heart and you can't divorce yourself from whom you are.’
      • ‘One of Rotunda's arguments is this: ‘Judges do not divorce themselves from the world when they don their robes.’’
      • ‘I am a bit nervous but not about going on TV because you can sort of divorce yourself from the cameras.’
      • ‘As a scientist, you divorce yourself from the surrounding circumstances of the case.’
      • ‘Mr. Sullivan, you divorced yourself from the Catholic Church a long time ago.’
      • ‘First it was Centralian College who divorced themselves from the relationship.’
      • ‘That's something you have to divorce yourself from.’
      • ‘The campus near Latrobe is not completely divorcing itself from politics.’
      • ‘You cannot divorce yourself from your history.’
      • ‘He has divorced himself from the very ideals that made him a worthwhile political actor.’
      • ‘‘The problem is if you divorce yourself from how much fun it is to read that comic, it isn't really a movie,’ he said.’
      • ‘Really, my body divorced itself from me in July.’
      • ‘Has he ever tried writing music without refracting things through his own personal experience, divorcing himself from the act of creation?’
      • ‘But Campbell said that D&W, which is divorcing itself from accountants Arthur Andersen, would not rush into any deals.’
      • ‘The Zapatista communities have completely divorced themselves from the state.’
      • ‘I don't want to divorce myself from that but I was in Glasgow.’
      • ‘You're supposed to be somewhat separated from your client so you can divorce yourself from some of the emotional issues.’
      • ‘Staying at home does not mean that one divorces oneself from the outside world.’
      • ‘Don Brash has put himself in a situation that he can't ever divorce himself from.’

Origin

Late Middle English: the noun from Old French divorce, from Latin divortium, based on divertere (see divert); the verb from Old French divorcer, from late Latin divortiare, from divortium.

Pronunciation

divorce

/dəˈvôrs//dəˈvɔrs/