Word Origin & History
mid-15c., from M.Fr. aboliss-, prp. stem of abolir "to abolish," from L. abolescere "to die out, decay little by little," inceptive of L. abolere "to retard the growth of," from ab- "from" + adolere "to grow," from PIE *ol-eye-, causative of base *al- "to grow, nourish" (see
). Tucker writes that there has been a confusion of forms in L., based on similar roots, one meaning "to grow," the other "to destroy." Application to persons and concrete objects has long been obsolete.