[uh-brey-siv, -ziv]


any material or substance used for grinding, polishing, etc., as emery, pumice, or sandpaper.


tending to abrade; causing abrasion; abrading.
tending to annoy or cause ill will; overly aggressive: an abrasive personality.

Nearby words

  1. abram,
  2. abranchiate,
  3. abraser,
  4. abrash,
  5. abrasion,
  6. abrasiveness,
  7. abraxas,
  8. abrazo,
  9. abreact,
  10. abreaction

Origin of abrasive

1870–75; < Latin abrās(us) (see abrasion) + -ive

Related formsa·bra·sive·ly, adverba·bra·sive·ness, nounun·a·bra·sive, adjectiveun·a·bra·sive·ly, adverb

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for abrasive

British Dictionary definitions for abrasive



a substance or material such as sandpaper, pumice, or emery, used for cleaning, grinding, smoothing, or polishing


causing abrasion; grating; rough
irritating in manner or personality; causing tension or annoyance
Derived Formsabrasiveness, noun

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 abrasive
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for abrasive




Causing abrasion.


A material used to produce abrasion.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.