From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Neglect \Neg*lect"\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Neglected; p. pr. &
   vb. n. Neglecting.] [L. neglectus, p. p. of neglegere
   (negligere) to disregard, neglect, the literal sense prob.
   being, not to pick up; nec not, nor (fr. ne not + -que, a
   particle akin to Goth. -h, -uh, and prob. to E. who; cf.
   Goth. nih nor) + L. legere to pick up, gather. See No,
   adv., Legend, Who.]
   1. Not to attend to with due care or attention; to forbear
      one's duty in regard to; to allow to pass unimproved,
      unheeded, undone, etc.; to omit; to disregard; to slight;
      as, to neglect duty or business; to neglect to pay debts.
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            I hope
            My absence doth neglect no great designs. --Shak.
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            This, my long suffering and my day of grace,
            Those who neglect and scorn shall never taste.
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   2. To omit to notice; to forbear to treat with attention or
      respect; to slight; as, to neglect strangers.
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   Syn: To slight; overlook; disregard; disesteem; contemn. See
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Neglect \Neg*lect"\, n. [L. neglectus. See Neglect, v.]
   1. Omission of proper attention; avoidance or disregard of
      duty, from heedlessness, indifference, or willfulness;
      failure to do, use, or heed anything; culpable disregard;
      as, neglect of business, of health, of economy.
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            To tell thee sadly, shepherd, without blame,
            Or our neglect, we lost her as we came. --Milton.
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   2. Omission of attention or civilities; slight; as, neglect
      of strangers.
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   3. Habitual carelessness; negligence.
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            Age breeds neglect in all.            --Denham.
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   4. The state of being disregarded, slighted, or neglected.
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            Rescue my poor remains from vile neglect. --Prior.
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   Syn: Negligence; inattention; disregard; disesteem;
        remissness; indifference. See Negligence.
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   benign neglect A deliberate policy of minimizing public
      discussion of a controversial issue [e.g. by the
      president] on the theory that excessive discussion in
      itself is harmful or counterproductive.
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