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[ih-reys] /ɪˈreɪs/
verb (used with object), erased, erasing.
to rub or scrape out, as letters or characters written, engraved, etc.; efface.
to eliminate completely:
She couldn't erase the tragic scene from her memory.
to obliterate (material recorded on magnetic tape or a magnetic disk):
She erased the message.
to obliterate recorded material from (a magnetic tape or disk):
He accidentally erased the tape.
Computers. to remove (data) from computer storage.
Slang. to murder:
The gang had to erase him before he informed on them.
verb (used without object), erased, erasing.
to give way to effacement readily or easily.
to obliterate characters, letters, markings, etc., from something.
Origin of erase
1595-1605; < Latin ērāsus (past participle of ērādere), equivalent to ē- e-1 + rāsus scraped; see raze
Related forms
erasability, noun
erasable, adjective
half-erased, adjective
nonerasable, adjective
unerasable, adjective
unerased, adjective
unerasing, adjective
Can be confused
erasable, irascible.
1. expunge, obliterate. See cancel.
1, 3. restore. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for erased
  • It is so unfortunate that our history can be so easily erased.
  • Despite those increases, many funds do not appear to have erased the losses they suffered during the recession.
  • My own view is that the concept of monster cannot be erased from our language and thinking.
  • So my parents erased their cultural distinctiveness to spare us kids the same pain.
  • Every action in your life is now recorded, no records are lost or erased and nothing is forgiven.
  • The reader is allowed to decipher the words, because they are crossed out, but not erased.
  • There are a number of reason for this, including the fact that the line between country and city is being erased by urban sprawl.
  • They could be the ancestors of later animals, or they may have been completely erased by extinction.
  • It all ended in rain-a downpour on shore that erased all of it so quickly.
  • History cannot be erased and present conditions cannot be ignored.
British Dictionary definitions for erased


to obliterate or rub out (something written, typed, etc)
(transitive) to destroy all traces of; remove completely: time erases grief
to remove (a recording) from (magnetic tape)
(transitive) (computing) to replace (data) on a storage device with characters representing an absence of data
Derived Forms
erasable, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Latin ērādere to scrape off, from ex-1 + rādere to scratch, scrape
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 erased



c.1600, from Latin erasus, past participle of eradere "scrape out, scrape off, shave," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + radere "to scrape" (see raze). Of magnetic tape, from 1945. Related: Erased; erasing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for erased



To kill; rub out (1940s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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