verb (used with object), abbreviated, abbreviating.
to shorten (a word or phrase) by omitting letters, substituting shorter forms, etc., so that the shortened form can represent the whole word or phrase, as ft. for foot, ab. for about, R.I. for Rhode Island, NW for Northwest, or Xn for Christian.
to reduce (anything) in length, duration, etc.; make briefer: to abbreviate a speech.
verb (used without object), abbreviated, abbreviating.
to use abbreviations.

1400–50; late Middle English abbreviaten < Late Latin abbreviātus shortened (past participle of abbreviāre), equivalent to Latin ad- ad- + breviātus (brevi(s) short + -ātus -ate1)

abbreviator, noun

See shorten. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To abbreviate
World English Dictionary
abbreviate (əˈbriːvɪˌeɪt)
1.  to shorten (a word or phrase) by contraction or omission of some letters or words
2.  to shorten (a speech or piece of writing) by omitting sections, paraphrasing, etc
3.  to cut short
[C15: from the past participle of Late Latin abbreviāre, from Latin brevis brief]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

mid-15c., from L. abbreviatus, pp. of abbreviare "to shorten" (see abbreviation). Also sometimes 15c. abbrevy, from M.Fr. abrevier (14c.), from L. abbreviare. Related: Abbreviated; abbreviating.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
One might suggest that he should abbreviate the history and cut to the spontaneous comedy.
Depending on whose heavily abbreviate version of the story you read, facts can appear in a different light.
Nor does this inclination to abbreviate stop at the door of the laboratory.
Runners who abbreviate their stride try instinctively to quicken their pace to compensate.
Related Words
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