Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • transitive verb To force to leave a country or place by official decree; exile.
  • transitive verb To drive away; expel.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To outlaw; put under ban.
  • To condemn to exile by political or judicial authority; expel from or relegate to a country or a place, either permanently or for a time: often with objectives of both person and place: as, he was banished the kingdom; Ovid was banished to Tomi.
  • To send or drive away; expel; dismiss: with a person or thing as object: as, to banish sorrow; to banish an obnoxious person from one's presence or thoughts.
  • Synonyms Banish, Exile, Expel, expatriate, put away, are all used of removal by physical or moral compulsion; they all have a figurative as well as a literal use. To banish is, literally, to put out of a community or country by ban or civil interdict, and indicates a complete removal out of sight, perhaps to a distance. To exile is simply to cause to leave one's place or country, and is often used reflexively; it emphasizes the idea of leaving home, while banish emphasizes rather that of being forced by some authority to leave it: as, the bitterness of exile; banished to Siberia. Expel, literally, to drive out, means primarily to cast out forcibly and violently, and secondarily with disgrace: as, to expel from the chamber, or from college; he was expelled the country.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To condemn to exile, or compel to leave one's country, by authority of the ruling power.
  • transitive verb To drive out, as from a home or familiar place; -- used with from and out of.
  • transitive verb To drive away; to compel to depart; to dispel.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb To send someone away and forbid that person from returning.
  • verb To expel, especially from the mind.

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

  • verb ban from a place of residence, as for punishment
  • verb expel, as if by official decree
  • verb expel from a community or group
  • verb drive away

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English banishen, from Old French banir, baniss-, of Germanic origin; see bhā- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French banir ("to proclaim, ban, banish") and Old English bannan, Proto-Germanic *bannanan (“curse, forbid”). Compare to French bannir.

Examples

  • In old Mauritania, now Marocco,384 the Moors proper are notable sodomites; Moslems, even of saintly houses, are permitted openly to keep catamites, nor do their disciples think worse of their sanctity for such licence: in one case the English wife failed to banish from the home “that horrid boy.”

    The Book of The Thousand Nights And A Night

  • The sad truth was that, for a woman, a hasty word or an embrace—even unwanted—could be enough to tarnish her name and banish her and her family from society.

    The Laird Who Loved Me

  • The sad truth was that, for a woman, a hasty word or an embrace—even unwanted—could be enough to tarnish her name and banish her and her family from society.

    The Laird Who Loved Me

  • The sad truth was that, for a woman, a hasty word or an embrace—even unwanted—could be enough to tarnish her name and banish her and her family from society.

    The Laird Who Loved Me

  • When the Lord recalls the banish'd, [1415] h199-p1. 7, [1416] h199-p2. 4

    The Chorale Book for England

  • When the Lord recalls the banish'd, [637] h121-p0. 6

    Lyra Germanica: Second Series: The Christian Life

  • Do you believe that on some level he was able to "banish" Rakhi's ominous competitor?

    Queen of Dreams by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni: Questions

  • Having gained power through this coup d'etat, Antonio then proceeded to 'banish' his brother in such a way as to ensure the death of Prospero and his infant daughter, casting them adrift in an unseaworthy sea vessel with only the supply of food and water provided for them by a kindly old courtier named Gonzalo.

    Shakespeare

  • It was one thing to "banish" a "demon" no one could see-it was quite another to actually defeat such a creature in a battle anyone could see with his own eyes!

    The Robin And The Kestrel

  • He expected the High Bishop to "banish" the creature as he always had before, though probably in a much more spectacular manner.

    The Robin And The Kestrel

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