9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[uh-bliv-ee-uh n] /əˈblɪv i ən/
the state of being completely forgotten or unknown:
a former movie star now in oblivion.
the state of forgetting or of being oblivious:
the oblivion of sleep.
the act or process of dying out; complete annihilation or extinction:
If we don't preserve their habitat, the entire species will pass into oblivion.
Archaic. official disregard or overlooking of offenses; pardon; amnesty.
Origin of oblivion
1350-1400; Middle English < Middle French < Latin oblīviōn- (stem of oblīviō), equivalent to oblīv(īscī) to forget + -iōn- -ion; see ob-
Related forms
self-oblivion, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for oblivion
  • Conspiracy theorists will insist that an entire population was banished to a faraway island, where they step-danced to oblivion.
  • Many came so close to making the layout but now would fade into oblivion.
  • The bottom of a moulin-a vertical shaft in the ice-opened up and sucked the entire lake into oblivion.
  • The vast majority of them sink into virtual oblivion once they are published.
  • But if watercolors are absent at those professional shows, the medium may be headed in a downward spiral toward oblivion.
  • oblivion to the effects of one's words or movement is intolerable.
  • It was for me an illustration that points to something much more powerful and important than ease of existence and then oblivion.
  • Two big, macabre, largely forgotten news stories came lurching out of oblivion together this week.
  • But all he wants to do is reclaim himself from his induced oblivion.
  • Here, oblivion appears to encroach on the protagonist and eventually stamp out all embers of emotion.
British Dictionary definitions for oblivion


the condition of being forgotten or disregarded
the state of being mentally withdrawn or blank
(law) an intentional overlooking, esp of political offences; amnesty; pardon
Word Origin
C14: via Old French from Latin oblīviō forgetfulness, from oblīviscī to forget
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 oblivion

late 14c., "state or fact of forgetting," from Old French oblivion (13c.) and directly from Latin oblivionem (nominative oblivio) "forgetfulness; a being forgotten," from oblivisci (past participle oblitus) "forget," originally "even out, smooth over, efface," from ob "over" (see ob-) + root of levis "smooth," from PIE *lei-w-, from root *(s)lei- "slime, slimy, sticky" (see slime (n.)). Meaning "state of being forgotten" is early 15c.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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