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abate

[uh-beyt]
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verb (used with object), a·bat·ed, a·bat·ing.
  1. to reduce in amount, degree, intensity, etc.; lessen; diminish: to abate a tax; to abate one's enthusiasm.
  2. Law.
    1. to put an end to or suppress (a nuisance).
    2. to suspend or extinguish (an action).
    3. to annul (a writ).
  3. to deduct or subtract: to abate part of the cost.
  4. to omit: to abate all mention of names.
  5. to remove, as in stone carving, or hammer down, as in metalwork, (a portion of a surface) in order to produce a figure or pattern in low relief.
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verb (used without object), a·bat·ed, a·bat·ing.
  1. to diminish in intensity, violence, amount, etc.: The storm has abated. The pain in his shoulder finally abated.
  2. Law. to end; become null and void.
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Origin of abate

1300–50; Middle English < Middle French abatre to beat down, equivalent to a- a-5 + batre < Late Latin batere for Latin battuere to beat; a- perhaps also understood as a-3
Related formsa·bat·a·ble, adjectivea·bat·er; Law. a·ba·tor, nounun·a·bat·a·ble, adjectiveun·a·bat·ing, adjectiveun·a·bat·ing·ly, adverb

Synonyms

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Antonyms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

slow, slacken, ebb, wane, dwindle, recede, taper, subside, decrease, diminish, dull, decline, subdue, reduce, coast, quell, allay, moderate, cool, unlax

Examples from the Web for abating

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • But his contempt was abating; he was growing uneasy; Philip was before him as fierce as ever.

    The Manxman

    Hall Caine

  • The gale still held on, however, and we saw no signs of its abating.

  • Indeed, communication was not difficult now that the force of the gale was abating.

    Sir Henry Morgan, Buccaneer

    Cyrus Townsend Brady

  • The wind is abating, madam,—the worst is over; and now to my question.

    Sir Jasper Carew

    Charles James Lever

  • In the meantime the Queen's anger was abating, and the trouble was blowing over.

    Shakespearean Playhouses

    Joseph Quincy Adams


British Dictionary definitions for abating

abate

verb
  1. to make or become less in amount, intensity, degree, etcthe storm has abated
  2. (tr) law
    1. to remove, suppress, or terminate (a nuisance)
    2. to suspend or extinguish (a claim or action)
    3. to annul (a writ)
  3. (intr) law (of a writ, legal action, etc) to become null and void
  4. (tr) to subtract or deduct, as part of a price
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Word Origin

C14: from Old French abatre to beat down, fell
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for abating

abate

v.

"put an end to" (c.1300); "to grow less, diminish in power or influence" (early 14c.), from Old French abattre "beat down, cast down," from Vulgar Latin *abbatere, from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + battuere "to beat" (see batter (v.)). Secondary sense of "to fell, slaughter" is in abatis and abattoir. Related: Abated; abating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper