eli·​sion | \ i-ˈli-zhən How to pronounce elision (audio) \

Definition of elision

1a : the use of a speech form that lacks a final or initial sound which a variant speech form has (such as 's instead of is in there's)
b : the omission of an unstressed vowel or syllable in a verse to achieve a uniform metrical pattern
2 : the act or an instance of omitting something : omission

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Synonyms for elision


deletion, omission

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Examples of elision in a Sentence

unfortunately, when the book was condensed, some of the elisions rendered major plot developments incomprehensible

Recent Examples on the Web

Does the elision imply that the concept is redundant? Peter Pomerantsev, New York Times, "What Trained Bears Can Teach Us About Formerly Authoritarian Countries," 3 May 2018 Readers may have noticed a slight elision in my May 30 column on these matters. Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "Open Up the Horowitz Secret Appendix," 15 June 2018 As a result of these elisions, the film feels less like a documentary than like a work of abstract expressionism, yet much beauty can be found in Russell's approach. Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader, "Chicago Underground Film Festival: Gold and copper miners tough it out in Good Luck," 5 June 2018 Over time, elision became neglect: Partial articulations of a world of peoples were conflated with the very toxic particularism they had been created to realistically combat. Martin Peretz, WSJ, "‘Rooted Cosmopolitans’ Review: Of Persons and Peoples," 8 May 2018 While progress is more radically interrogated in Christodora than the other novels, elision is central to all three. Manuel Betancourt, Longreads, "Bending the Straight Line of Queer History," 29 Mar. 2018 The British have raised elision to a whimsical art form. Ken Jennings, Condé Nast Traveler, "You're Probably Pronouncing These British Towns Incorrectly," 8 Jan. 2018 As with performing on social media for friends, family or co-workers — posting your best pictures, documenting your most exciting activities or professionally marketing yourself — these individually tiny elisions weren’t entirely honest. John Herrman, New York Times, "Learning to Fool Our Algorithmic Spies," 9 Jan. 2018 Certainly, there is a bit of elision here: Litt, a white male Ivy League graduate, is not quite the zero his comedic/fairy-tale setup needs him to be. Katy Waldman, Slate Magazine, "This memoir by a former White House speechwriter (and joke writer) is irresistibly charming. It also feels like the setup for a grim cosmic punch line.," 29 Sep. 2017

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

circa 1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for elision

Late Latin elision-, elisio, from Latin elidere

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Statistics for elision

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for elision

The first known use of elision was circa 1586

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More from Merriam-Webster on elision

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with elision

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for elision

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about elision

Comments on elision

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


something valued as if it were money

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