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From Middle English abatement, from Anglo-Norman abatre (to abate) (from Old French abatre)[1], + -ment;[2] equivalent to abate +‎ -ment.


  • (file)
  • (US, UK) IPA(key): /əˈbeɪt.mənt/


abatement (countable and uncountable, plural abatements)

  1. The act of abating, or the state of being abated; a lessening, diminution, or reduction; a moderation; removal or putting an end to; the suppression. [First attested from 1340 to 1470.][3][1]
    The abatement of a nuisance is the suppression thereof.
  2. (accounting) The deduction of minor revenues incidental to an operation in calculating the cost of the operation.
  3. (law) The action of a person that abates, or without proper authority enters a residence after the death of the owner and before the heir takes possession.[2]
  4. (law) The reduction of the proceeds of a will, when the debts have not yet been satisfied; the reduction of taxes due.[4][First attested around 1150 to 1350.][3]
  5. An amount abated; that which is taken away by way of reduction; deduction; decrease; a rebate or discount allowed; in particular from a tax. [Late 15th century.][3]
  6. (heraldry) A mark of dishonor on an escutcheon; any figure added to the coat of arms tending to lower the dignity or station of the bearer.[2] [Early 17th century.][3]
  7. (Scotland) Waste of stuff in preparing to size. [5]
  8. A beating down, a putting down.
  9. A quashing, a judicial defeat, the rendering abortive by law.
  10. Forcible entry of a stranger into an inheritance when the person seised of it dies, and before the heir or devisee can take possession; ouster.
  11. rebatement, real or imaginary marks of disgrace affixed to an escutcheon.



Derived terms[edit]



  1. 1.0 1.1 Elliott K. Dobbie, C. William Dunmore, Robert K. Barnhart, et al. (editors), Chambers Dictionary of Etymology (Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd, 2004 [1998], →ISBN), page 2
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Philip Babcock Gove (editor), Webster's Third International Dictionary of the English Language, Unabridged (G. & C. Merriam Co., 1976 [1909], →ISBN)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Lesley Brown, editor-in-chief; William R. Trumble and Angus Stevenson, editors (2002), “abatement”, in The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary on Historical Principles, 5th edition, Oxford; New York, N.Y.: Oxford University Press, →ISBN, page 2.
  4. ^ Laurence Urdang (editor), The Random House College Dictionary (Random House, 1984 [1975], →ISBN), page 1
  5. ^ abatement, n.” in the Dictionary of the Scots Language, Edinburgh: Scottish Language Dictionaries.

Further reading[edit]