• (America) IPA: /əˈbeɪ.əns/


  1. (legal) Expectancy; condition of ownership of real property being undetermined; lapse in succession of ownership of estate, or title. [Late 16th century]
    The proceeds of the estate shall be held in abeyance in an escrow account until the minor reaches age twenty-one.
  2. Suspension; temporary suppression; dormant condition. [Mid 17th century]
  3. (heraldry) Expectancy of a title, its right in existence but its exercise suspended.
    The broad pennant of a commodore first class has been in abeyance since 1958, together with the rank.
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