Word of the Day

Sunday, August 08, 2004

efface

\ih-FAYS\ , transitive verb;
1.
To cause to disappear by rubbing out, striking out, etc.; to erase; to render illegible or indiscernible.
2.
To destroy, as a mental impression; to wipe out; to eliminate completely.
3.
To make (oneself) inconspicuous.
Quotes:
Her fingerprints were gone, she thought. Effaced.
-- Rosellen Brown, Half a Heart
Death, so omnipresent in the past that it was familiar, would be effaced, would disappear.
-- Philippe Aries, Western Attitudes Toward Death from the Middle Ages to the Present
Conversely, as a reaction, one may note in passing that more serious and dedicated writers choose to keep a low profile and to disguise or to efface themselves as much as possible.
-- Sergio Perosa, "The Heirs of Calvino and the Eco Effect", New York Times, August 16, 1987
Origin:
Efface comes from French effacer, from Old French esfacier, from es-, "out" (from Latin ex-) + face, "face" (from Latin facies).
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