abra·​sion | \ ə-ˈbrā-zhən \

Definition of abrasion

1a : a wearing, grinding, or rubbing away by friction
2 : an abraded area of the skin or mucous membrane

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Synonyms for abrasion


bruise, graze, scrape

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Examples of abrasion in a Sentence

abrasion of rocks by wind and water walked away from the auto accident with only minor abrasions

Recent Examples on the Web

Cannon later climbed up to the place where the accident occurred to help Prince, who, like himself, was traumatized, and saw rope abrasions on the rock, but could not find any remnant equipment that would indicate a safety system failure. Peter Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, "Witness to death plunge of 2 climbers on El Capitan describes horrific final moments," 10 June 2018 In the Taber Test, which measures wear from prolonged abrasion, Gorilla Glass 3 appears visibly less scratched than Gorilla Glass 4, and Gorilla Glass 5 looks to be somewhere in between the two. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "Why your brand-new smartphone will scratch just as easily as your old one," 19 Oct. 2018 The severity of the tears is measured in degrees, ranging from common 1st and 2nd degree (minor cuts or abrasions) to severe 3rd and 4th degree (deep lacerations to muscles and tissue). Frances F. Denny, Harper's BAZAAR, "What People Don’t Tell You About Childbirth: The Realities of Vaginal Tearing," 16 July 2018 Lillianna suffered several abrasions, contusions and bleeding on the brain. Washington Post, "Charges: Driver didn’t slow before he hit kids at playground," 13 June 2018 The lightweight fabric has UPF 45 protection, dries quickly, and shields against abrasions and scratches. Mandy Ferreira, Sunset, "10 Best Kids’ Hiking Shoes & Gear," 22 Jan. 2018 Give a few extra shots to the shoulders, chest, and waist, where the most abrasion occurs and DWR is most likely to wear off quicker. Ryan Stuart, Outside Online, "Tips to Make Your Rain Gear Last Forever," 31 May 2018 Police also noticed an abrasion on Evelyn Craft’s right shoulder and left forearm. Raisa Habersham, ajc, "Cops: Woman fatally stabbed mother, waited 4 hours to call Gwinnett police," 28 June 2018 Treatment ultimately depends on how bad your abrasion is. Korin Miller, SELF, "9 Health Issues That Can Cause Sensitivity to Light," 5 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abrasion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of abrasion

circa 1550, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for abrasion

borrowed from Medieval Latin abrāsiōn-, abrāsiō, from Latin abrādere "to scrape off" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of action nouns — more at abrade

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Statistics for abrasion

Last Updated

23 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for abrasion

The first known use of abrasion was circa 1550

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English Language Learners Definition of abrasion

: an injury caused by something that rubs or scrapes against the skin

: the act or process of damaging or wearing away something by rubbing, grinding, or scraping


abra·​sion | \ ə-ˈbrā-zhən \

Medical Definition of abrasion

1 : wearing, grinding, or rubbing away by friction
2a : the rubbing or scraping of the surface layer of cells or tissue from an area of the skin or mucous membrane also : a place so abraded
b : the mechanical wearing away of the tooth surfaces by chewing

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Comments on abrasion

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tremendous in size, volume, or degree

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