To be absolved is to be let off the hook, to be set free from a certain obligation or to be forgiven for a wrongdoing. The Church may absolve you of your sins, but that won’t absolve you of the need to attend mass.

The Latin absolvere, which means “to set free,” is the root of the word absolve. In the religious sense, to be absolved means to be truly forgiven in the eyes of the Lord, which must feel like being set free. In a more mundane everyday usage, absolve can be used to describe being let off the hook. For instance, putting a campaign poster in your window does not absolve you of the responsibility to vote.

Definitions of absolve
  1. verb

    grant remission of a sin to

    “The priest
    absolved him and told him to say ten Hail Mary’s”
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    type of:


    stop blaming or grant forgiveness

  2. verb

    excuse or free from blame

    absolve you from this responsibility”
    free, justify
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    blame, fault

    put or pin the blame on

    excuse, exempt, let off, relieve

    grant exemption or release to
    wash one’s hands

    to absolve oneself of responsibility or future blame

    exempt by means of an official pass or letter, as from customs or other checks
    type of:


    stop blaming or grant forgiveness

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