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American Dictionary of the English Language

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Disengage


DISENGAGE, verb transitive [dis and engage.]

1. To separate, as a substance from any thing with which it is in union; to free; to loose; to liberate; as, to disengage a metal from extraneous substances.

Caloric and light must be disengaged during the process.

2. To separate from that to which one adheres, or is attached; as, to disengage a man from a party.

3. To disentangle; to extricate; to clear from impediments, difficulties or perplexities; as, to disengage one from broils or controversies.

4. To detach; to withdraw; to wean; as, to disengage the heart or affections from earthly pursuits.

5. To free from any thing that commands the mind, or employs the attention; as, to disengage the mind from study; to disengage ones self from business.

6. To release or liberate from a promise or obligation; to set free by dissolving an engagement; as, the men, who were enlisted, are now disengaged; the lady, who had promised to give her hand in marriage, is disengaged. Let it be observed that disengaged properly implies previous engagement; and is not to be confounded with unengaged, which does not always imply prior engagement. This distinction is sometimes carelessly overlooked.