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abbreviate

[uh-bree-vee-eyt] /əˈbri viˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), abbreviated, abbreviating.
1.
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.
2.
to reduce (anything) in length, duration, etc.; make briefer:
to abbreviate a speech.
verb (used without object), abbreviated, abbreviating.
3.
to use abbreviations.
Origin
late Middle English
1400-1450
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)
Related forms
abbreviator, noun
Synonyms
See shorten.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for abbreviator

abbreviate

/əˈbriːvɪˌeɪt/
verb (transitive)
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
Derived Forms
abbreviator, noun
Word Origin
C15: from the past participle of Late Latin abbreviāre, from Latin brevis brief
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for abbreviator
abbreviate
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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