- to remove or destroy all traces of; do away with; destroy completely.
- to blot out or render undecipherable (writing, marks, etc.); efface.
Origin of obliterate
SynonymsSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Wordsannihilate, expunge, exterminate, ravage, erase, eliminate, smash, obscure, eradicate, scratch, kill, extirpate, cancel, ax, total, zap, cut, waste, efface, finish
Examples from the Web for obliterate
Israel has destroyed 80% of the ones they have found, and needs only a few days to obliterate the rest.Israel Tells Hamas: You Can Keep Your Rockets
Eli Lake, Josh Rogin
July 31, 2014
Destroy them God, obliterate them from the face of the earth.“Destroy them, God, obliterate them from the face of the earth.”
Emily L. Hauser
August 30, 2012
He promised to obliterate Obamacare “and replace it with real reform.”Mitt Romney Fires Up Supporters on Virginia Campaign Stop
June 28, 2012
Yet to destroy the precious book would be to obliterate centuries of information about the Ma family line.The Mystery of Yo-Yo Ma's Name
Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
February 9, 2010
It would be vain for him to try to obliterate the traces of his priesthood.Abbe Mouret's Transgression
Could he but obliterate as completely the dread reckoning of another world!The Shadow of a Crime
I should turn my ray upon you and obliterate you immediately.
Was he, at last, ashamed, and trying to obliterate the memory of his jealousy?The Genius
Margaret Horton Potter
He moved toward it very carefully, in order not to obliterate any footprints.Oh, You Tex!
William Macleod Raine
- (tr) to destroy every trace of; wipe out completely
Word Origin and History for obliterate
c.1600, from Latin obliteratus, past participle of obliterare "cause to disappear, blot out, erase, efface," figuratively "cause to be forgotten," from ob "against" (see ob-) + littera (also litera) "letter, script" (see letter (n.)); abstracted from phrase literas scribere "write across letters, strike out letters." Related: Obliterated; obliterating.
- To remove an organ or another body part completely, as by surgery, disease, or radiation.
- To blot out, especially through filling of a natural space by fibrosis or inflammation.