erode

verb
\ i-ˈrōd How to pronounce erode (audio) \
eroded; eroding

Definition of erode

transitive verb

1 : to diminish or destroy by degrees:
a : to eat into or away by slow destruction of substance (as by acid, infection, or cancer)
b : to wear away by the action of water, wind, or glacial ice flooding eroded the hillside
c : to cause to deteriorate or disappear as if by eating or wearing away inflation eroding buying power
2 : to produce or form by eroding glaciers erode U-shaped valleys

intransitive verb

: to undergo erosion where the land has eroded away

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Other Words from erode

erodibility \ i-​ˌrō-​də-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce erodibility (audio) \ noun
erodible or less commonly erodable \ i-​ˈrō-​də-​bəl How to pronounce erodable (audio) \ adjective

Examples of erode in a Sentence

Crashing waves have eroded the cliffs along the beach. The shoreline has eroded badly.
Recent Examples on the Web More broadly, Sanger’s mishandling of the matter could erode trust between researchers and African people, setting back genomic research that could benefit them, de Vries says. Erik Stokstad, Science | AAAS, "Major U.K. genetics lab accused of misusing African DNA," 30 Oct. 2019 At a gathering of industry CEOs in September, leading travel brands urged the government to stem the eroding U.S. share of the global market by guaranteeing future funding for Brand USA, a tourism marketing agency. Bani Sapra, chicagotribune.com, "US travel industry to Chinese tourists: What trade war?," 29 Oct. 2019 At a gathering of industry CEOs in September, leading travel brands urged the government to stem the eroding U.S. share of the global market by guaranteeing future funding for Brand USA, a tourism marketing agency. Washington Post, "US travel industry to Chinese tourists: What trade war?," 28 Oct. 2019 Oil from your hands can erode the surface of the stone. Natalie B. Compton, The Know, "How to navigate the etiquette of dark tourism," 27 Oct. 2019 Sleep seems crucial to this balance of learning and forgetting, solidifying some memories and eroding others through the brain’s patterns of electrical signaling, but the mechanisms at work have been unclear. Quanta Magazine, "Dueling Brain Waves Anchor or Erase Learning During Sleep," 24 Oct. 2019 The area is known for constantly shifting sands and an eroding coastline. NBC News, "Danes try to move 120-year-old lighthouse from eroding coast," 22 Oct. 2019 Thereby, the population’s ability to react to the changing environment has eroded. Alicia Prager, Quartz Africa, "The fight against Nigeria’s northeast terrorism is also a battle against climate change," 18 Oct. 2019 Lester said, where in cities like Pacifica, south of San Francisco, buildings on eroding cliffs were tagged unsafe and later demolished. Anne C. Mulkern, Scientific American, "Coastal City Refuses to Retreat," 7 Oct. 2019

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

1612, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for erode

Latin erodere to eat away, from e- + rodere to gnaw — more at rodent

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Statistics for erode

Last Updated

12 Nov 2019

Time Traveler for erode

The first known use of erode was in 1612

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More Definitions for erode

erode

verb
How to pronounce erode (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of erode

: to gradually destroy (something) or to be gradually destroyed by natural forces (such as water, wind, or ice)

erode

verb
\ i-ˈrōd How to pronounce erode (audio) \
eroded; eroding

Kids Definition of erode

: to destroy or be destroyed by wearing away Waves erode the shore.
\ i-ˈrōd How to pronounce erode (audio) \
eroded; eroding

Medical Definition of erode

1 : to eat into or away by slow destruction of substance (as by acid, infection, or cancer) acids that erode the teeth bone eroded by cancer
2 : to remove with an abrasive a dental tool that erodes the decayed area

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More from Merriam-Webster on erode

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for erode

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with erode

Spanish Central: Translation of erode

Nglish: Translation of erode for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of erode for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about erode

Comments on erode

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