• WordNet 3.6
    • n abstainer a person who refrains from drinking intoxicating beverages
    • n abstainer someone who practices self denial as a spiritual discipline
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Abstainer One who abstains; esp., one who abstains from the use of intoxicating liquors.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n abstainer One who abstains; specifically, one who abstains from the use of intoxicating liquors; a teetotaler.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • ns Abstainer specially one who does not take alcoholic drinks
    • ***


  • Ambrose Bierce
    “Abstainer. A weak man who yields to the temptation of denying himself a pleasure.”
  • Epictetus
    “All philosophy lies in two words, sustain and abstain.”
  • Horace Greeley
    Horace Greeley
    “Abstaining is favorable both to the head and the pocket.”
  • Friedrich Nietzsche
    “These people abstain, it is true: but the bitch Sensuality glares enviously out of all they do.”
  • Zoroaster
    “When you doubt, abstain.”
  • George Eliot
    “Blessed is the man who, having nothing to say, abstains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact.”


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr. abstenir—L. abs, from, tenēre, to hold. See Tenable.


In literature:

But the total abstainers were the worst, being out of practice with the can.
"Erema" by R. D. Blackmore
I decided to abstain from so inadequate a gesture, and turned my head away.
"Swann's Way" by Marcel Proust
We were all total abstainers.
"My Friends at Brook Farm" by John Van Der Zee Sears
Peterborough, with his little party of dragoons, rode through the streets exhorting, entreating, and commanding the rioters to abstain.
"The Bravest of the Brave" by G. A. Henty
The wise man abstains from them entirely; he pays attention to his diet, and in other respects leaves nature to her course.
"Good Sense" by Paul Henri Thiry, Baron D'Holbach
I feel persuaded you can induce her to abstain, if you will do so yourself.
"Brought Home" by Hesba Stretton
She had abstained from sending to him the letter which she had written, and had abstained on that resolution.
"The Eustace Diamonds" by Anthony Trollope
I do not think it false to abstain from telling things that the world would laugh at.
"The Thirteen" by Honore de Balzac
It need not be said that Jasper carefully abstained from reminding his old city friends of his existence.
"What Will He Do With It, Complete" by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
Braddell did not abstain from making known his causes of complaint.
"Lucretia, Complete" by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
He returned to the cottage at sunset, partook of the fare provided for him, abstained from the brandy, and felt dreadfully low.
"My Novel, Complete" by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
Leave Paris at once, and abstain from all action.
"The Parisians, Complete" by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
Pleasant the snaffle of Courtship, improving the manners and carriage; But the colt who is wise will abstain from the terrible thorn-bit of Marriage.
"Departmental Ditties and Barrack Room Ballads" by Rudyard Kipling
Thou shall abstain from destroying or causing the destruction of any living thing.
"The Freethinker's Text Book, Part II." by Annie Besant
Every married man should abstain during certain natural seasons.
"Searchlights on Health" by B. G. Jefferis and J. L. Nichols
If you have any doubts, says Paul, the safe course is to abstain from the conduct in question.
"Expositions of Holy Scripture: Romans Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)" by Alexander Maclaren
So he abstained from meat altogether for about two years.
"Brave Men and Women" by O.E. Fuller
On the division they and their party abstained, so that the majority dropped to 77.
"John Redmond's Last Years" by Stephen Gwynn
May I perform this act, or must I abstain therefrom?
"Explanation of Catholic Morals" by John H. Stapleton
One afflicted with heart disease should abstain from the use of all kinds of stimulants, tobacco, and whatever tends to lower vitality.
"The People's Common Sense Medical Adviser in Plain English" by R. V. Pierce

In poetry:

Then pause e'er yet the cup you drain,
The hand that lifts it, stay,
Resolve for ever to abstain,
And cast the bowl away.
"Song" by John Pierpont
But there shall follow in your train
A holy, happy throng,
The wise and good will soon abstain,
And join the conq'rer's song.
"To Teetotallers" by John Pierpont
From noting the size of her gaiters
True gentlemen never abstain;
If larger than those of a bay
They pass her in royal distain.
"The Misanthrope's Reverie" by Joseph Warren Watson
God of love, their aid impart,
Fill us, now, with holy zeal,
Soften every harden'd heart,
Let us for each other feel,
From each direful draught abstain,
That we may our brother gain.
"Christian's Duty To Attempt The Salvation Of Drunkards" by John Pierpont
He was a man that didn't care for company,
Because company interfered with his study,
And confused the bright ideas in his brain,
And for that reason from company he liked to abstain.
"Death and Burial of Lord Tennyson" by William Topaz McGonagall
"Who of these flowers plucks one, let him ne'er yearn
To touch the other sister's bloom.
Let him enjoy, who has no faith; eterne
As earth, this truth!—Abstain, who faith can learn!
The world's long story is the world's own doom."
"Resignation" by Friedrich von Schiller

In news:

Germany sided with Russia and China as it abstained from the UN Security Council vote to take "all necessary measures" to protect civilians in Libya.
Three members voted in support of the bill, 2 against, and 4 abstained.
Selectman Sheila Dibb abstained from voting.
Bucks County Commissioner Charley Martin abstained from a vote on the truancy program.
The secret ballot passed with 38 in favor, eight against and three abstaining.
And, more importantly, recovery is much more than abstaining from alcohol and drug use.
FRANKFORT – Gov Steve Beshear joined public safety and business leaders Wednesday to announce a campaign to encourage Kentuckians to pledge to abstain from texting while driving.
Despite a widespread belief that sex during the later stages of pregnancy can jumpstart labor, a new study from Malaysia found no differences in the timing of delivery between women who had sex near term and those who abstained.
A commissioner whose personal attorney represents an applicant who requests relief from the commissioner's board or agency may be required to abstain.
The final tally Tuesday was 188-3, with Israel and Palau joining the United States and three countries abstaining.
Berlusconi party abstains in gov't confidence vote.
Dems abstain from voting in protest of potential introduction of right-to-work bill.
But these days, we go on mini binges--then abstain for a while.
Most rabbis encourage gays to suppress their attractions, abstain from gay sex or undergo therapy to try to go straight.
During the holy month of Ramadan , devout Muslims fast from dawn to dusk, abstaining even from water.

In science:

We however abstain from speculating on the relevance of this fact for our approach.
Gauge Theory in Riem(M)
Thus for full maximal Cartan actions of these groups, rigidity are abstained by using almost the same manners as in .
New Cases of Differential Rigidity for Non-Generic Partially Hyperbolic Actions
Public goods with punishment and abstaining in finite and infinite populations.
Strategy abundance in evolutionary many-player games with multiple strategies
With payouts DC (n) = exp(2n ) (game C) Bernoulli’s criterion iii recommends to abstain from the gamble for ticket prices P ≥ W . criterion ii recommends to abstain if paying the ticket price poses the risk of bankruptcy, i.e. if P ≥ W + exp(2).
Menger 1934 revisited
Since the formulas arising are much more cumbersome, we abstained from writing them down carefully and proving them.
Moment asymptotics for branching random walks in random environment
The inclusion of probabilities (and other magnitudes) in ROC curves or the use for abstaining classifiers [16, 42, 13] has not paved the way on how to do similar things for regression.
A graphical analysis of cost-sensitive regression problems
Optimizing abstaining classifiers using ROC analysis.
A graphical analysis of cost-sensitive regression problems
Though this definition refers to a mechanism “causing” D = 1 or D = 0, we abstain from defining this more formally in terms of potential outcomes until the next section.
General theory for interactions in sufficient cause models with dichotomous exposures
Since our interest here is merely the implementation in principle, we abstain from performing concrete but straightforward calculations of amplitudes for surfaces with inserted Wilson loops.
Two-dimensional quantum Yang-Mills theory with corners
In ternary games, v (S, T ) for any (S, T ) ∈ Q(N ) is interpreted as the result of voting (+1: the bill is accepted, −1: the bill is rejected) when S is the set of voters voting in favor and T the set of voters voting against. N \ S ∪ T is the set of abstainers.
Bi-capacities -- Part I: definition, M\"obius transform and interaction
The present author feels that it is appropriate to abstain from describing this theory in one sentence, it is better to refer to the literature .
Around the gap between sociophysics and sociology
The above analysis is based on the assumption of compulsory participation in public goods interactions but what happens if participation is voluntary and risk averse individuals may choose to abstain? This situation can be modeled by introducing a third strategic type, the non-participating loners [39, 40].
Stochastic evolutionary game dynamics
Public goods with punishment and abstaining in finite and infinite populations.
Stochastic evolutionary game dynamics
But even if one wants to abstain from employing the influence of a pre-existing mean field it has to be considered that neighboring cells are never exactly equal.
Test-field method for mean-field coefficients with MHD background
The rate function I (d) comes via a contraction principle from a principle for the empirical measures of Markov chains; we abstain from writing it down.
Upper tails of self-intersection local times of random walks: survey of proof techniques