• WordNet 3.6
    • v relent give in, as to influence or pressure
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Relent Stay; stop; delay. "Nor rested till she came without relent Unto the land of Amazons."
    • Relent To become less rigid or hard; to yield; to dissolve; to melt; to deliquesce. "He stirred the coals till relente gan
      The wax again the fire."
      "Salt of tartar] placed in a cellar will . . . begin to relent .""When opening buds salute the welcome day,
      And earth, relenting , feels the genial ray."
    • Relent To become less severe or intense; to become less hard, harsh, cruel, or the like; to soften in temper; to become more mild and tender; to feel compassion. "Can you . . . behold
      My sighs and tears, and will not once relent ?"
    • Relent To mollify ; to cause to be less harsh or severe.
    • Relent To slacken; to abate. "And oftentimes he would relent his pace."
    • Relent To soften; to dissolve.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • relent To slacken; stay.
    • relent To soften in substance; lose compactness; become less rigid or hard.
    • relent To deliquesce; dissolve; melt; fade away.
    • relent To become less severe or intense; relax.
    • relent To become less harsh, cruel, or obdurate; soften in temper; become more mild and tender; give way; yield; comply; feel compassion.
    • relent To slacken; remit; stay; a bate.
    • relent To soften; mollify; dissolve.
    • n relent Remission; stay.
    • n relent Relenting.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.i Relent rē-lent′ to slacken, to soften or grow less severe: to grow tender: to feel compassion
    • adj Relent soft-hearted: yielding
    • n Relent (Spens.) relenting
    • ***


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. ralentir, fr. L. pref. re-, re- + ad, to + lentus, pliant, flexible, slow. See Lithe


In literature:

This insolent and unfeeling tyrant, instead of any relentings, had only sought to make sport of her anxiety.
"Caleb Williams" by William Godwin
Pedre intercedes; Adraste seems to relent; and Pedre calls for Zaide.
"Character Sketches of Romance, Fiction and the Drama, Vol 1" by The Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D.
"The Wonders of Prayer" by Various
Sir Bale showed no signs of relenting.
"J. S. Le Fanu's Ghostly Tales, Volume 3" by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
On the twenty-seventh nature at last relented and, to his great satisfaction, there was a generous downpour.
"George Washington: Farmer" by Paul Leland Haworth
Yet, were it not for this unhappy notion, I am sure your mother would relent.
"Clarissa, Volume 7" by Samuel Richardson
Relent, therefore, O hero, it behoveth thee not to send me away.
"Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 1" by Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa
But presently, dwelling on the matter, she began to relent.
"The Castle Inn" by Stanley John Weyman
At last, Krishna relents.
"The Loves of Krishna in Indian Painting and Poetry" by W. G. Archer
At first he refused, but finally relented and brought me a cup of tea and some buttered bread.
"A Mind That Found Itself" by Clifford Whittingham Beers
But, at the end of a century, the people relented and felt their mistake.
"A Walk from London to John O'Groat's" by Elihu Burritt
Next year, however, her father relented.
"The World's Greatest Books, Vol IX." by Edited by Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton
Here," he added, relenting a little, "Davey's slung ye a hammock in the forecastle.
"Eric" by Frederic William Farrar
His vow is overheard by Dafne, who, seeing that her love for Iacinto may no more avail, at last relents.
"Pastoral Poetry and Pastoral Drama" by Walter W. Greg
But why did Willis relent?
"Who Goes There?" by Blackwood Ketcham Benson
When thus appealed to Mountjoy relented, and agreed that a pound should be staked on each game.
"Mr. Scarborough's Family" by Anthony Trollope
Ne ever pitty may relent his malice hard.
"Flowers and Flower-Gardens" by David Lester Richardson
Her mother was always moved by her tears, and would not her aunt relent?
"The Teacher" by Jacob Abbott
It ultimately relented, however, and came down in torrents through the night.
"The Siege of Kimberley" by T. Phelan
And so Josephine relented and they were married, although it can not truthfully be said that they lived happily ever afterward.
"Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Vol. 2 of 14" by Elbert Hubbard

In poetry:

Though from our darkened lives they take
What makes our life most dear,
We yield them for their country's sake
With no relenting tear.
"Parting Hymn" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
Ne'er cease to pray, and never rest,
'Till God has granted thy request —
Namely — a heart, that can relent,
Can grieve for sin, and can repent —
"Advice To Those Who Are Desirous Of Obtaining God's Favour, And Forgiveness Of Their Sins" by Rees Prichard
YES, DELIA loves! My fondest vows are blest;
Farewel the memory of her past disdain;
One kind relenting glance has heal'd my breast,
And balanc'd in a moment years of pain.
"Delia, An Elegy" by Anna Laetitia Aikin Barbauld
Since shade relents, since 'tis indeed the day,
Since hope I long had deemed forever flown,
Wings back to me that call on her and pray,
Since so much joy consents to be my own,—
"Since Shade Relents" by Paul Verlaine
Like some pale stripling, when his icy way
Relenting, yields beneath the noontide beam,
I stand aghast; and, chill'd with fear, survey
How far I've tempted life's deceitful stream.
"Elegy XVII. He Indulges the Suggestions of Spleen.-- An Elegy to the Winds" by William Shenstone
But Spring came, gentle Spring, the young, the fair,
And with her smiles subdued his frosty heart,
So that for very joy to see her there,
His soul, relenting, play'd the lover's part;
"A Conceit" by Walter Richard Cassels

In news:

Thanks to a petition drive by friends, colleagues, and supporters, ICE eventually relented and had the shackle removed.
The company finally relented it was a mistake.
In "fiscal cliff" negotiations, the White House says it will not discuss changes to entitlement programs until the GOP relents on raising income tax rates on wealthy Americans.
Georgia law had previously banned Sunday sales, though lawmakers since relented.
1 grocer Kroger relents, ends 'pink slime' use.
But some relent less Chicago runners are unfazed.
Rockers relent and make music available through digital store.
Royal York hotel denies entry to horse, relents later in day.
For the past three months, I've been staking out some of my favorite online discount sites hoping the $700 (plus) roundtrip prices to Costa Rica would relent.
OHL relents, will provide scholarship funding to former player Milan Doczy.
Responding to a media storm (The Daily, CBS, ABC, me), the USDA has relented on "pink slime," the ammonia-treated hamburger filler that the agency has been ushering into school-cafeteria burgers.
FEMA's finally relenting on Fort Monmouth housing.
SPJ's FOI Committee Blog — Utah Legislature relents, releases redistricting documents — Utah to permit television cameras in court.
His caucus isn't likely to relent on tax hikes without a fight (Obama wants to raise rates on household income above $250,000.
Not only did Miss Glitter stalk Mr Pop until he relented and sang with her, she also got the Flaming Lips in bed.