abutment

noun
abut·​ment | \ ə-ˈbət-mənt How to pronounce abutment (audio) \
plural abutments

Definition of abutment

1 : the place at which one thing borders on or abuts another Once it chanced that I stood in the very abutment of a rainbow's arch, which filled the lower stratum of the atmosphere, tinging the grass and leaves around, and dazzling me as if I looked through colored crystal.— Henry David Thoreau
2a : the part of a structure (such as an arch or a bridge) that directly receives thrust or pressure
b dentistry : a tooth or part of a dental implant to which a prosthetic appliance (such as a bridge or artificial crown) is attached for support A dental bridge, like a highway bridge … is supported by abutments, sound teeth on either side of the empty gap.Mount Sinai Medical Center Family Guide to Dental Health

Examples of abutment in a Sentence

The car crashed into a bridge abutment.
Recent Examples on the Web The driver was startled and turned the steering wheel hard to the right, causing the SUV to cross into the right lane and collide with a bridge abutment under Voltaire Street. City News Service, San Diego Union-Tribune, "2 hospitalized after SUV crashes in Point Loma Heights," 19 Apr. 2021 The psychic catastrophe of unapproachable canyon houses, windows that functioned as one-way glass, rooms locked in abutment, like coffins. Jonathan Lethem, The New Yorker, "The Crooked House," 1 Mar. 2021 In the case of the Avon site, the DOT project required deep excavation for the construction of bridge abutments. Emily Brindley, courant.com, "Archaeologists uncover 12,500-year-old site in Avon, showing evidence of the earliest known population in Connecticut," 11 Dec. 2019 So the plane slides the whole length of this runway and up on an abutment and breaks in half. Willing Davidson, The New Yorker, "Baseball, Fiction, and Life: Roger Angell’s Era-Spanning Career at The New Yorker," 16 Feb. 2020 Construction vehicles will use the access road when building the abutment of a bridge that will carry light-rail trains over Colesville Road, Julian said. Washington Post, "Md. man charged in 2018 killing in Congress Heights," 6 Dec. 2019 To the north and south are abutments from the old Eagle Avenue Bridge and the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge. Robert Higgs, cleveland, "Lawsuit seeks $11.5M, claiming Cleveland destroyed property’s value when old street became a park," 19 July 2019 Da Vinci would have added what are known as wing walls, abutments out to the side of the bridge, steadying it during harsh conditions. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "500 Years Later, MIT Proves That Da Vinci's Bridge Design Works," 10 Oct. 2019 Since the region was prone to earthquakes, Leonardo also incorporated abutments splaying outward on either side of the bridge to stabilize the structure against lateral motion. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Testing Leonardo da Vinci’s bridge: His design was stable, study finds," 16 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abutment.' 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 abutment

1644, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for abutment

abut + -ment

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Time Traveler for abutment

Time Traveler

The first known use of abutment was in 1644

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Statistics for abutment

Last Updated

27 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Abutment.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abutment. Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for abutment

abutment

noun

English Language Learners Definition of abutment

technical : a heavy structure that supports something (such as a bridge)

abutment

noun
abut·​ment | \ ə-ˈbət-mənt How to pronounce abutment (audio) \

Medical Definition of abutment

: a tooth or part of a dental implant to which a prosthetic appliance (such as a bridge or artificial crown) is attached for support A dental bridge, like a highway bridge … is supported by abutments, sound teeth on either side of the empty gap.Mount Sinai Medical Center Family Guide to Dental Health, 1991 Once the healing period is over, the gum is cut open again and a little metal cylinder called an abutment is put in the implant. It takes another few days for the gum to heal before the crown is put on …Harvard Health Letter, 2003

abutment

noun
abut·​ment | \ ə-ˈbət-mənt How to pronounce abutment (audio) \

Legal Definition of abutment

: the place at which abutting occurs at the abutment of two properties

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