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[reyz] /reɪz/
verb (used with object), razed, razing.
to tear down; demolish; level to the ground:
to raze a row of old buildings.
to shave or scrape off.
Also, rase.
1540-50; Middle English rasen < Middle French raser < *Vulgar Latin rāsāre to scrape, frequentative of Latin rādere to scrape
Related forms
razer, noun
unrazed, adjective
Can be confused
raze, raise.
1. See destroy. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for razed
  • Whole swaths of the city are being razed for new construction.
  • Buildings were often razed by earthquakes or fire, so durable houses were rare.
  • And wherever there is such demand for tropical agribusiness, forests are being razed to meet it.
  • Her house, which has become a shrine to the democracy movement's living deity, may be confiscated and razed.
  • Housing projects, declared unfit even for animals, were razed.
  • All existing buildings are expected to be razed in the redevelopment.
  • The former building at this address had been subsequently razed and this site is now a vacant lot.
  • Many additional structures were severely damaged and several will have to be razed and reconstructed.
  • Owing to the deteriorating condition of the mansion, he had it razed and a new one built on the site.
  • Many of the smaller structures that remain standing are badly damaged and will be razed.
British Dictionary definitions for razed


verb (transitive)
to demolish (a town, buildings, etc) completely; level (esp in the phrase raze to the ground)
to delete; erase
(archaic) to graze
Derived Forms
razer, raser, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Old French raser from Latin rādere to 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 razed



1540s, alteration of racen "pull or knock down" (a building or town), from earlier rasen (14c.) "to scratch, slash, scrape, erase," from Old French raser "to scrape, shave" (see rase). Related: Razed; razing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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