attenuation

noun at·ten·u·a·tion \ ə-ˌten-yə-ˈwā-shən , -yü-ˈā- \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of attenuation

plural attenuations
: the act or process of attenuating something or the state of being attenuated: such as
a : a lessening in amount, force, magnitude, or value : weakening
  • Sound can travel thousands of kilometers in this planar acoustic waveguide with little attenuation.
  • —David Ritchie
b : a reduction of severity or virulence : a decrease in the pathogenicity of a microorganism or in the severity of a disease
  • This virus grew well in tissue culture, with only limited temperature sensitivity as a marker of possible attenuation.
  • —Peter F. Wright
c : diminution of thickness
  • The detailing of the doorway, the narrowness and attenuation of the columns of the portico, and most especially the paneling and ornamentation in the interior … bespeak the neoclassical, somewhat similar to the plaster work found in Baltimore interiors.
  • —Jessie Poesch

First Known Use of attenuation

1559


Medical Dictionary

attenuation

noun at·ten·u·a·tion \ ə-ˌten-yə-ˈwā-shən \

medical Definition of attenuation

: a decrease in the pathogenicity or vitality of a microorganism or in the severity of a disease

Law Dictionary

attenuation

noun at·ten·u·a·tion \ ə-ˌten-yu̇-ˈwā-shən \

legal Definition of attenuation

: a lessening of the amount, force, or magnitude of something; specifically : a weakening of the connection between an illegal police procedure and the evidence obtained by it such that the evidence is admissible at trial as an exception to the exclusionary rule

Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

WORD OF THE DAY

food, provisions, or a tasty dish

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

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

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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