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abutment

[uh-buht-muh nt] /əˈbʌt mənt/
noun
1.
Architecture, Civil Engineering.
  1. a masonry mass supporting and receiving the thrust of part of an arch or vault.
  2. a force that serves to abut an arch or vault.
  3. a mass, as of masonry, receiving the arch, beam, truss, etc., at each end of a bridge.
  4. a mass or structure for resisting the pressure of water on a bridge, pier, or the like.
  5. each of the parts of a canyon or the like receiving the thrusts of an arch dam.
  6. a structure for absorbing tensions from reinforcing strands for concrete being prestressed.
2.
the place where projecting parts meet; junction.
3.
Dentistry. a tooth or tooth root that supports or stabilizes a bridge, denture, or other prosthetic appliance.
Origin
1635-1645
1635-45; abut + -ment
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for abutments
  • They also break legs clambering over concrete abutments and get smacked by automobiles.
  • Paint bleeds across the abutments between surface and frame, establishing the paint skin as the work's forward plane.
  • The stone piers and abutments, seen in the photo bottom left, are the only remaining elements from the original bridge.
  • Of course, there are a wide variation of conditions at abutments and each location needs to be designed for the site conditions.
British Dictionary definitions for abutments

abutment

/əˈbʌtmənt/
noun
1.
the state or process of abutting
2.
  1. something that abuts
  2. the thing on which something abuts
  3. the point of junction between them
3.
(architect, civil engineering) a construction that takes the thrust of an arch or vault or supports the end of a bridge
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for abutments

abutment

n.

1640s, from abut + -ment. Originally any "junction;" the architectural usage is attested from 1793 (the notion is of the meeting-place of the arches of a bridge, etc.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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abutments in Medicine

abutment a·but·ment (ə-bŭt'mənt)
n.
A natural tooth or implanted tooth substitute used to support or anchor a dental prosthesis.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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