Definitions

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • v. atone for, make amends for.
  • v. To pay for; to suffer for; to atone for; to make amends for; to give satisfaction.
  • v. To endure; to abide.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To give or pay an equivalent for; pay the penalty of; atone for; suffer for. Also spelled abye and abuy.
  • To hold out; endure.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. make amends for

Etymologies

From Middle English abyen, abye, abien, abiggen,[2] from Old English ābyćġan ("to buy, pay for, buy off, requite, recompense, redeem, perform, execute"), from ā- + bycgan ("to buy"),[2] equivalent to a- +‎ buy. Cognate with Gothic 𐌿𐍃𐌱𐌿𐌲𐌾𐌰𐌽 (usbugjan).[3] (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • aby or abey - past: abought, past part.: abought

    3rd person sing.: abys/abeys

    abying/abeying

    October 19, 2011

  • 1. To pay for; to buy.
    2. To pay the penalty for; atone for.
    3. To pay as penalty, to suffer.
    4. To endure, to experience, to tolerate. (Confused with abide.)
    5. To endure; to abide. (Confused with abide.)

    Old English �?bycgan (corresponding to a- + buy), from Germanic.

    "Lest to thy peril thou aby it dear." - Shakespeare, Midsummer Night's Dream

    "But nought that wanteth rest can long aby." - Spenser

    May 7, 2008