abridg·​ment | \ə-ˈbrij-mənt \
variants: or abridgement

Definition of abridgment 

1 : the action of abridging something : the state of being abridged abridgment of rights a book shortened by careful abridgment

2 : a shortened form of a work retaining the general sense and unity of the original reading an abridgment of the original book

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of abridgment in a Sentence

this Italian-English pocket dictionary is an abridgment of the hardback edition

Recent Examples on the Web

The abridgment resulted in the loss of fully half the oratorio. Special To The Plain Dealer, cleveland.com, "Cleveland Orchestra pulls off a save after illness strikes singers in Haydn's 'The Seasons' (review)," 19 Jan. 2018 Today, that abridgment is just as loud the brass bands, drumlines, and multitudes of majorettes marching down Martin Luther King and Malcolm X boulevards on Juneteenth. Vann R. Newkirk Ii, The Atlantic, "The Quintessential Americanness of Juneteenth," 19 June 2017 Peter Eotvos’s 2004 opera is an abridgment of the play by Tony Kushner, and makes its local debut with the New York City Opera, which is doing a decent job of presenting interesting, contemporary work. David Allen, New York Times, "Classical Music in NYC This Week," 8 June 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of abridgment

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for abridgment

Middle English abbreggement, borrowed from Anglo-French abregement, from abreger "to abridge" + -ment -ment

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about abridgment

Share abridgment

Dictionary Entries near abridgment

Abri Audit




a brief word



Statistics for abridgment

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for abridgment

The first known use of abridgment was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for abridgment


variants: or abridgement \ ə-​ˈbrij-​mənt \

Kids Definition of abridgment

: a shortened form of a written work

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on abridgment

What made you want to look up abridgment? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!