Definitions

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

  • n. One who rejects a religion, cause, allegiance, or group for another; a deserter.
  • n. An outlaw; a rebel.
  • adj. Of, relating to, or resembling a renegade; traitorous.
  • intransitive v. To become a deserter or an outlaw.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An outlaw or rebel.
  • n. A disloyal person who betrays or deserts his cause, religion, political party, friend, etc.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An apostate from Christianity or from any form of religious faith.
  • n. One who deserts from a military or naval post; a deserter.
  • n. A common vagabond; a worthless or wicked fellow.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. An apostate from a religious faith.
  • n. One who deserts to an enemy; one who deserts his party and joins another; a deserter.
  • n. Synonyms Neophyte, Proselyte., etc. (see convert), backslider, turncoat.
  • n. Traitor, runaway.

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

  • adj. having deserted a cause or principle
  • n. a disloyal person who betrays or deserts his cause or religion or political party or friend etc.
  • v. break with established customs
  • n. someone who rebels and becomes an outlaw

Etymologies

Spanish renegado, from Medieval Latin renegātus, past participle of renegāre, to deny : Latin re-, re- + Latin negāre, to deny; see ne in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Spanish renegado, from Medieval Latin renegatus, perfect participle of renego ("deny"). See also renege. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • While the upsurge could be temporary -- coinciding with efforts by Iraqi-government officials to crack down on what they call renegade militias -- it could also represent a new threat to fragile security gains made recently by U.S. forces.

    Iraqi Forces Battle Shiite Militias

  • I quickly learned that Cooper, more than a "renegade," is something of an outlaw genius when it comes to making the most out of a school meals budget.

    Maria Rodale: A National Look at School Lunches, Part 2

  • Sebastian Lerdo de Tejada, president of Mexico between 1872-76, began his career as a radical renegade from the priesthood and ended it as a liberal elitist whose strongest backing came from the professional classes and the wealthy but who lacked a wide base of popular support.

    Lerdo de Tejada: Jacobin to liberal elitist

  • Democracy is something we ourselves have less and less of, as a result of our present long term renegade militarism wildly and desperately enforcing a grandiose world-wide commercial imperialism which finds itself on the wane, but continuingly hailed on our conglomerate corporate network TV.

    Imprison Us Too! Abuse Us Without Charge Too! Let Us Expiate! Be Normal!

  • That this Du Pin had, while there, made the acquaintance of a certain Greek renegade, having, as a matter of fact, stayed in the house of this renegade.

    Satyricon

  • Quite probably, Croetine was stunned-she never described her initial reaction-but a couple of years later, under fire from Rome and having changed her name to Masked Beauty, she called her renegade sisters, one by one, into her quarters, read to them the cardinal's account of how he came to obtain Mary's prophecy, and then let each nun read the message for herself.

    Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates

  • The word renegade describes him aptly, I think: he was born and bred a Brahmin,

    The Bronze Bell

  • It is probable that when the reader discovers who "Belle Boyd" and Mr. Hardinge were -- that the former, had it not been for her sex, would undoubtedly have been hanged early in the war as a spy, and that the latter was a renegade from the Federal cause -- he will consider they were treated not too harshly by the authorities, whom it would be absurd to hold responsible for occasional vulgar brutality on the part of underlings.

    Current Literature

  • He is now called a renegade by many in his party for standing with President Bush on the invasion and occupation of Iraq.

    CT-SEN: Times Endorsement Of Lamont Blasts Lieberman

  • In the dark last days of mankind, in a world ruled by fear and hate, a ragtag renegade group of Americans led by Jesus Christ himself are fighting back.

    G.I. Jesus -Thank god I am not religious. (Satire)

Comments

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  • rene-gade

    March 23, 2011

  • A really sucky NES beat-em-up.

    July 10, 2009

  • I read an interesting use of this in Don Quixote the other day, of a galley slave that had turned Muslim and become a shipmaster. Turns out we get this word from the Spanish renegado, and that Cervantes's use was the original one - a Christian who had denied the faith and turned Muslim. The Latin root is renego, to deny -- as in renege.

    May 30, 2009

  • Barack Obama's Secret Service code name...

    November 15, 2008