First attested 1400–50. From Middle English abbreviacioun, from Middle French abréviation, from Late Latin abbreviātiō, from ab (“from”) + abbreviō (“make brief”), from Latin ad + breviō (“shorten”), from brevis (“short”).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /əˌbriː.viˈeɪ.ʃən/
- (General American) IPA(key): /əˌbri.viˈeɪ.ʃn̩/
- Rhymes: -eɪʃən
abbreviation (plural abbreviations)
- The result of shortening or reducing; abridgment. [First attested around 1350 to 1470.]
- (linguistics) A shortened or contracted form of a word or phrase, used to represent the whole, utilizing omission of letters, and sometimes substitution of letters, or duplication of initial letters to signify plurality, including signs such as, +, =, @. [Late 16th century.]
- The process of abbreviating. [Mid 16th century.]
- (music) A notation used in music score to denote a direction, as pp or mf.
- (music) One or more dashes through the stem of a note, dividing it respectively into quavers, semiquavers, demisemiquavers, or hemidemisemiquavers.
- Any convenient short form used as a substitutuion for an understood or inferred whole.
- the phrase "civil rights" is an abbreviation for a whole complex of relationships. - Pres. Truman's comittee on Civil Rights
- (biology) Loss during evolution of the final stages of the ancestral ontogenetic pattern.
- (mathematics) Reduction to lower terms, as a fraction.
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.
- Lesley Brown (editor), The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, 5th edition (Oxford University Press, 2003 , ISBN 978-0-19-860575-7), page 3