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1610s, from Late Latin exfoliatus, past participle of exfoliare "to strip of leaves," from ex- "off" (see ex-) + folium "leaf" (see folio). Related: Exfoliated; exfoliating.
exfoliative ex·fo·li·a·tive (ěks-fō'lē-ā'tĭv)adj. Marked by exfoliation, desquamation, or profuse scaling.