Bible Lexicons

Old & New Testament Greek Lexical Dictionary

#630 - ἀπολύω

from (G575) and (G3089)
Parts of Speech
  1. to set free
  2. to let go, dismiss, (to detain no longer)
    1. a petitioner to whom liberty to depart is given by a decisive answer
    2. to bid depart, send away
  3. to let go free, release
    1. a captive i.e. to loose his bonds and bid him depart, to give him liberty to depart
    2. to acquit one accused of a crime and set him at liberty
    3. indulgently to grant a prisoner leave to depart
    4. to release a debtor, i.e. not to press one's claim against him, to remit his debt
  4. used of divorce, to dismiss from the house, to repudiate. The wife of a Greek or Roman may divorce her husband.
  5. to send one's self away, to depart
Strong #: 1478 ‑ גָּוַע (gaw‑vah');  1644 ‑ גָּרַשׁ (gaw‑rash');  1980 ‑ הָלַךְ (haw‑lak');  7725 ‑ שׁוּב (shoob);  
Frequency Lists  
Verse Results
Liddell-Scott-Jones Definitions

ἀπολύω [v. λύω ], fut. -λύσω, etc.: fut. Pass. ἀπολελύσομαι X. Cyr. 6.2.37:


1. loose from, ἱμάντα θοῶς ἀπέλυσε κορώνης Od. 21.46; ὄφρ' ἀπὸ τοίχους λῦσε κλύδων τρόπιος the sides of the ship from the keel, ib. 12.420; undo, ἀπὸ κρήδεμνον ἔλυσεν ib. 3.392; ἐπιδέσματα Hp. Fract. 25.

2. set free, release, relieve from, ἀ. τινὰ τῆς φρουρῆς Hdt. 2.30; τῆς ἐπιμελείας X. Cyr. 8.3.47; τῶν ἐκεῖ κακῶν Pl. R. 365a; τὴν ψυχὴν ἀπὸ τῆς τοῦ σώματος κοινωνίας Id. Phd. 65a, cf. 67a; ἀ. τῆς μετρήσεως save them from the trouble of measuring, Arist. Pol. 1257a40: Pass., to be set free, τῶν δεινῶν, φόβου, Th. 1.70, 7.56, etc. freq. in legal sense, ἀ. τῆς αἰτίης acquit of the charge, Hdt. 9.88, X. An. 6.6.15; opp. καταψηφίζω, Democr. 262; τῆς εὐθύνης Ar. V. 571: c. inf., ἀ. τινὰ μὴ φῶρα εἶναι acquit of being a thief, Hdt. 2.174; so ἀπολύεται μὴ ἀδικεῖν Th. 1.95, cf. 128: abs., acquit, Ar. V. 988, 1000, Lys. 20.20, etc.

II in Il. always, = cross ἀπολυτρόω,

1.release on receipt of ransom, οὐδ' ἀπέλυσε θύγατρα καὶ οὐκ ἀπεδέξατ' ἄποινα 1.95; Ἕκτορ' ἔχει.. οὐδ' ἀπέλυσεν 24.115, al.: Med., set free by payment of ransom, ransom, redeem, χαλκοῦ τε χρυσοῦ τ' ἀπολυσόμεθ' at a price of.., Il. 22.50 (but Act. in Prose, ἀπολύειν πολλῶν χρημάτων X. HG 4.8.21).

2. let go, let alone, leave one, of an illness, Hp. Coac. 564.


1. discharge, disband an army, ἀ. οἴκαδε X. HG 6.5.21; generally, dismiss, discharge, ἐμὲ.. ἀπέλυσ' ἄδειπνον Ar. Ach. 1155, cf. Bion 1.96.

2. divorce a wife, Matthew 1:19, etc.; τὸν ἄνδρα D.S. 12.18.

3. do away with, remove, αἰσχύνην D. 20.47: Pass., Antipho 2.1.5.

4. discharge or pay a debt, Pl. Cra. 417b; pay, ἀ. τὸν χαλκόν PTeb. 490 (i B. C.); pay off a mortgage, POxy. 509.15.



1. dismiss a charge, εἰσαγγελία ὑπὸ τοῦ κατηγόρου ἀπολελυμένη Hyp. Eux. 38. ἀ. ἀνδράποδα Θρᾳξίν sell, Antipho 5.20; ἀ. οἰκίαν τινί sell a mortgaged house outright, Isa 6.33. deliver, τί τινι PFlor. 123.2 (iii A. D.): Pass., ib. 228.6 (iii A. D.). begin to count, [ μοίρας] ἀπό.. Vett. Val. 135: abs., Id. 19.19, Paul.Al. Q. 2. intr., depart (cf. B.IV, C. 2), Plb. 3.69.14, al. Med. with aor. 2 ἀπελύμην (in pass. sense), Opp. C. 3.128: redeem, v. supr. A. 11.

II ἀπολύεσθαι διαβολάς do away with, refute calumnies against one, Th. 8.87, Pl. Ap. 37b, al.: abs., Arist. Rh. 1416b9.

2. τὴν αἰτίαν, τὰς βλασφημίας, τὰ κατηγορημένα, Th. 5.75, D. 15.2, 18.4: c. gen., τῶν εἰς Ἀριστόβουλον -σασθαι J. AJ 15.3.5. refute, τοὺς ἐναντίους λόγους Dam. Pr. 126 ter: abs., ὁ δὲ ἀπολυόμενος ἔφη in defence, Hdt. 8.59.

III like Act.,


1. acquit, τοῦ μὴ κακῶς ἔχειν ἀλλ' ὀρθῶς Pl. Lg. 637c.

2. release from, τοὺς Ἕλληνας ἀ. δουλείας Id. Mx. 245a. like Pass. (c. 11), depart, S. Ant. 1314; also, put off, πνεῦμα ἀ. AP 9.276 (Crin.); but πνεῦμα μελῶν ἀπέλυε IG 14.607e (Carales). Pass., to be released, ἐλπίζων τοὺς υἱέας τῆς στρατηΐης ἀπολελύσθαι from military service, Hdt. 4.84, cf. X. Cyr. 6.2.37; τῆς ἀρχῆς ἀπολυθῆναι βουλόμενοι to be freed from their rule, Th. 2.8; τῶν δεινῶν μηδέποτε οἴεσθαι ἀπολυθήσεσθαι Id. 1.70; τῆς ὑποψίας Antipho 2.4.3; τῆς μιαρίας ib. 3.11: abs., to be acquitted, Th. 6.29; to be absolved from, τῶν ἀδικημάτων Pl. Phd. 113d.

II of combatants,

1. to be separated, part, οὐ ῥᾳδίως ἀπελύοντο Th. 1.49; generally, to be separated or detached, ἀλλήλων or ἀπ' ἀλλήλων, Arist. Metaph. 1031b3, Ph. 185a28; ἀ. τὰ ᾠὰ τῆς ὑστέρας Id. GA 754b18, al.; ἀπολελυμένος, abs., detached, αἰδοῖον, γλῶττα, ὄρχεις, Id. HA 500b2, 533a27, 535b2; τὴν γλῶτταν ἀ. having its tongue detached, Id. Fr. 319, al.; also, distinct, differentiated, Id. HA 497b22.

2. depart, ἔθανες, ἀπελύθης, S. Ant. 1268 (lyr.), cf. Plb. 6.58.4, al., LXX Numbers 20:29, al.; cf. supr. B.IV.

III of a child, to be brought forth, Hp. Superf. 11, cf. 24, Arist. GA 745b11; of the mother, to be delivered, Hp. Epid. 2.2.17. to be annulled, Arist. EN 1156a22. ἀπολελυμένος, η, ον, absolute, esp. in Gramm., D.T. 636.15, A.D. Synt. 97.20, al.: also, general, of meaning, Olymp.Alch. p.72B. of metres, irregular, without strophic responsion, Heph. Poëm. 5.

ἀπο -λύω ,

[in LXX for H7725, etc., freq. in 1-4 Mac;]

1. to set free, release: Luke 13:12, John 19:10, al.; a debtor, Matthew 18:27; metaph., of forgiveness, Luke 6:37.

2. to let go, dismiss (Field, Notes, 9 f.): Matthew 15:23, Luke 2:29; Luke 9:12, Acts 19:41, al.; of divorce, τ . γυναῖκα : Matthew 1:19; Matthew 5:31-32; Matthew 19:3; Matthew 19:8; Matthew 19:10 Mark 10:2; Mark 10:4; Mark 10:11, Luke 16:18; with ref. to Gk. and Rom. (net Jewish) custom, τ . ἄνδρα : Mark 10:12. Mid., to depart: Acts 28:25 (MM, s.v.).

Vocabulary of the Greek NT

This common verb, in the sense ";dismiss,"; ";send away on a mission"; (as Acts 13:3, and probably Hebrews 13:23) may be illustrated by P Par 49.19 (B.C. 164–58) (= Witkowski.2 p. 70) ἀπέλυσα εἴπας αὐτῶι ὀρθρίτερον ἐλθεῖν. In P Lond 42.26 (see above under ἀπολαμβάνω) it is used of departure from seclusion in the Serapeum—ὑπὲρ τοῦ ἀπολελύσθαι σε ἐκ τῆς κατοχῆς : cf. P Petr II. 11(i).3 (iii/B.C.) (= Selections, p. 7) ὅπως τῆς ἐπὶ τοῦ παρόντος σχολῆς ἀπολυθῶ, ";in order that I may be relieved from my present occupation,"; BGU I. 27.14 (ii/A.D.) (= Selections, p. 101) ὥστε ἕως σήμερον μηδέν᾽ ἀπολελύσθαι τῶν μετὰ σίτου, ";so that up till to-day no one of us in the corn service has been let go."; Release from prison is implied in P Giss I. 65a.4, 66.11 (ii/A.D.) : see Kornemann’s note. P Oxy X. 1271.5 (A.D. 246) is in a request to the Prefect for a permit to leave the country by ship from Pharos : ἀξιῶ γράψαι σε τῷ ἐπιτρόπῳ τῆς Φάρου ἀπολῦσαί με κατὰ τὸ ἔθος. The sense of ";grant an amnesty to"; underlies P Par 63xiii. 2ff. (B.C. 165) ἀπολελυκότες πάντας τοὺς ἐνεσχημένους ἔν τισιν ἀγνοήμασιν ἤ ἁμαρτήμασιν, and P Tor I. 1vii. 13 (B.C. 116) (= Chrest. II. p. 37) : see Mitteis in loc. Akin to this is the use in BGU IV. 1106.34 (B.C. 13) πλὴν συνφανοῦς ἀ ̣π ̣ωλήας, ἧς καὶ φανερᾶς γενηθείσ [ης ἀ ]πολελύσθω. In P Tebt II. 490.3 (B.C. 92 or 59) ̣πολύσομ ̣α ̣ι ̣ τὸν χαλκόν the verb is used in the sense of ";pay,"; cf. P Rein 54.7 (iii/iv A.D.) διε ̣πεμψάμην σο ̣ι ̣ (κτήνη) . . . ὅπως γεμίσῃς αὐτὰ οἴνου ἐκ τῶν ἀπολυθέντων μοι ὑπὸ Ἰσχυρίωνος, ";afin que tu les charges de vin, acheté sur la somme que m’a remboursée Ischyrion"; (Ed.) : so elsewhere of delivering goods. The index to OGIS gives a long list of citations in various senses, which need not be further illustrated. But the idea of a veteran ";released"; from long service, suggestive for Luke 2:29, may be noted in the t.t. ἀπολύσιμος ἀπὸ στ [ρ ]ατείας, CPR 1.3 (A.D. 83–4) : cf. P Tebt II. 292.6 (A.D. 189–90) ἱερέως ἀπολυσίμου, P Lond 345.4 (A.D. 193) (= II. p. 114) ἀπολυσί (μων) τῆς λαογ ̣ρ ̣(αφίας). We may also compare Wünsch AF 4.30 (iii/A.D.) ὁρκίζω σε τὸν θεὸν τὸν τὴν κοίμησίν σοι δεδωρημένον καὶ ἀπολύσαντά σε ἀπὸ δ [εσμῶ ]ν τοῦ βίου Νεθμομαω, and a tombstone of ii/A.D. (Alexandria), Preisigke 2477 Ἡλιόδωρε οὐετρανὲ ἐντείμως ἀπολελυμένε, εὐψύχει : the perfect here might perhaps encourage us to take the phrase metaphorically—or literally, with a secondary application. It occurs with the aorist in Preisigke 423.8, seemingly a ii/A.D. papyrus : οὐετρα [νῷ ] τῶν ἐντείμως ἀπολυθέντων. Whether or no we may recognize the figurative sense in the veteran’s epitaph above, we may certainly illustrate the Nunc dimittis by this familiar term of military life.


The Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament.
Copyright © 1914, 1929, 1930 by James Hope Moulton and George Milligan. Hodder and Stoughton, London.
Derivative Copyright © 2015 by Allan Loder.
List of Word Forms
απελυεν απέλυεν ἀπέλυεν απελύετο απελύθη απελυθησαν απελύθησαν ἀπελύθησαν απελυοντο απελύοντο ἀπελύοντο απελυσαν απέλυσαν ἀπέλυσαν απελυσε απέλυσε ἀπέλυσε απελυσεν απέλυσεν ἀπέλυσεν απολελυμενην απολελυμένην ἀπολελυμένην απολελυμενον απολελυμένον ἀπολελυμένον απολελυσαι απολέλυσαι ἀπολέλυσαι Απολελυσθαι απολελύσθαι Ἀπολελύσθαι απολυει ἀπολύει απολυειν απολύειν ἀπολύειν απολυεις απολύεις ἀπολύεις απολυετε απολύετε ἀπολύετε Απολυθεντες απολυθέντες Ἀπολυθέντες απολυθησεσθε απολυθήσεσθε ἀπολυθήσεσθε απολυθητε απολυθήτε ἀπολυθῆτε απολύομαι απολυσαι απολύσαι απολύσαί ἀπολῦσαι ἀπολῦσαί απολυσας απολύσας ἀπολύσας απολυσασα ἀπολύσασα απολύσεται απολυση απολύση ἀπολύσῃ απολυσης απολύσης ἀπολύσῃς απολύσητε απολυσον απόλυσον ἀπόλυσον απολυσω απολύσω ἀπολύσω απολυων απολύων ἀπολύων apeluen apeluonto apelusan apeluse apelusen apeluthesan apeluthēsan apelyen apélyen apelyonto apelýonto apelysan apélysan apelyse apélyse apelysen apélysen apelythesan apelythēsan apelýthesan apelýthēsan apolelumenen apolelumenēn apolelumenon apolelusai Apolelusthai apolelymenen apolelymenēn apolelyménen apolelyménēn apolelymenon apolelyménon apolelysai apolélysai Apolelysthai Apolelýsthai apoluei apoluein apolueis apoluete apoluon apoluōn apolusai apolusas apolusasa apoluse apolusē apoluses apolusēs apoluso apolusō apoluson Apoluthentes apoluthesesthe apoluthēsesthe apoluthete apoluthēte apolyei apolýei apolyein apolýein apolyeis apolýeis apolyete apolýete apolyon apolyōn apolýon apolýōn apolysai apolŷsai apolŷsaí apolysas apolýsas apolysasa apolýsasa apolyse apolysē apolýsei apolýsēi apolýseis apolýsēis apolyses apolysēs apolyso apolysō apolýso apolýsō apolyson apólyson Apolythentes Apolythéntes apolythesesthe apolythēsesthe apolythḗsesthe apolythete apolythête apolythēte apolythē̂te
Old / New Testament Greek Lexical Dictionary developed by Jeff Garrison for Copyright 1999-2021. All Rights Reserved, Jeff Garrison, Gdansk, Poland.
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