Definition of abortion noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//əˈbɔːʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈbɔːrʃn//
    Operations, Pregnancy
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  1. 1[uncountable] the deliberate ending of a pregnancy at an early stage to support/oppose abortion a woman’s right to abortion abortion laws I've always been anti-abortion. Culture Abortion is the subject of strong public debate, especially in the US. Some people are in favour of abortion; called pro-choice supporters, they support a woman's right to choose whether to have a baby or not. On the opposite side are the pro-life campaigners, who believe in the right to life of the unborn child and think that abortion is wrong. In 1973 abortion during the first stages of pregnancy became legal all over the US through the Supreme Court decision Roe v Wade. The US government has tried to change the laws about abortion, but the changes have been disputed by federal courts and the courts have supported a woman's right to abortion. In Britain the Abortion Act of 1967 made abortion legal. The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) was founded to campaign against the Act. See related entries: Pregnancy
  2. 2[countable] a medical operation to end a pregnancy at an early stage She decided to have an abortion. See related entries: Operations
  3. synonym termination compare miscarriage
    Word Originmid 16th cent.: from Latin abortio(n-), from aboriri ‘miscarry’, from ab- ‘away, from’ + oriri ‘be born’.Extra examples She decided to have an abortion. Some nurses wanted the right to refuse to perform abortions. The abortion issue is political dynamite. Women’s groups are calling for free contraception and abortion on demand. the country’s strict abortion laws
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: abortion