Re*lief" (r?-l?f"), n. [OE. relef, F. relief, properly, a lifting up, a standing out. See Relieve, and cf. Basrelief, Rilievi.]


The act of relieving, or the state of being relieved; the removal, or partial removal, of any evil, or of anything oppressive or burdensome, by which some ease is obtained; succor; alleviation; comfort; ease; redress.

He seec the dire contagion spread so fast, That, where it seizes, all relief is vain. Dryden.


Release from a post, or from the performance of duty, by the intervention of others, by discharge, or by relay; as, a relief of a sentry.

For this relief much thanks; ;tis bitter cold. Shak.


That which removes or lessenc evil, pain, discomfort, uneasiness, etc.; that which gives succor, aid, or comfort; also, the person who relieves from performance of duty by taking the place of another; a relay.

4. FeudalLaw

A fine or composition which the heir of a deceased tenant paid to the lord for the privilege of taking up the estate, which, on strict feudal principles, had lapsed or fallen to the lord on the death of the tenant.

5. Sculp. & Arch.

The projection of a figure above the ground or plane on wwhich it is formed.

Relief is of three kinds, namely, high relief (altorilievo), low relief, (basso-rilievo), and demirelief (mezzo-rilievo). See these terms in the Vocabulary.

6. Paint.

The appearance of projection given by shading, shadow, etc., to any figure.

7. Fort.

The height to which works are raised above the bottom of the ditch.


8. Physical Geog.

The elevations and surface undulations of a country.


Relief valve, a valve arranged for relieving pressure of steam, gas, or liquid; an escape valve.

Syn. -- Alleviation; mitigation; aid; help; succor; assistance; remedy; redress; indemnification.


© Webster 1913.

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