• synonyms


verb (used with object), at·trit·ted, at·trit·ting.
  1. to wear down (an opposing military force) by numerical superiority in troops or firepower.
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Origin of attrit

First recorded in 1750–60; back formation from attrition
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for attritted


verb -trits, -tritting or -tritted US slang (tr)
  1. to wear down or dispose of gradually
  2. to kill
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Word Origin for attrit

C18: back formation from attrition
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 attritted



1956, U.S. Air Force back-formation from attrition which attained currency during the Vietnam War. (A 17c. attempt at a verb produced attrite). Related: Attrited; attriting.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper