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The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Abstain \Ab*stain"\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Abstained; p. pr. & vb. n. Abstaining.] [OE. absteynen, abstenen, OF. astenir, abstenir, F. abstenir, fr. L. abstinere, abstentum, v. t. & v. i., to keep from; ab, abs + tenere to hold. See Tenable.] To hold one's self aloof; to forbear or refrain voluntarily, and especially from an indulgence of the passions or appetites; -- with from. [1913 Webster] Not a few abstained from voting. --Macaulay. [1913 Webster] Who abstains from meat that is not gaunt? --Shak. [1913 Webster] Syn: To refrain; forbear; withhold; deny one's self; give up; relinquish. [1913 Webster]