What is the meaning, origin and usage of word ‘Relief’?

Meaning: The word relief corresponds to a feeling of reassurance and relaxation following release from anxiety or distress. It can also be used to denote financial or practical assistance given to those in special need or difficulty.

Origin: The word has been around since the 14th Century and is derived from Anglo-French relif from Old French relief. The meaning “aid to impoverished persons” is attested from around 1400 and from 19th Century it especially specified assistance from governments.

Apart from a brief spike in usage in the first half of the 20th Century, the usage of this word has remained stable over the last 200 years or so.

Usage: The classroom heaved a collective sigh of relief when the teacher announced that the test would be held later.

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