From Latin elido ‎(I strike out)



elide ‎(third-person singular simple present elides, present participle eliding, simple past and past participle elided)

  1. To leave out or omit (something)
    • 1995, Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle, An introduction to literature, criticism and theory:
      Graham Hough's apparently objective assertion that 'Ozymandias' is 'extremely clear and direct', for example, elides the question of 'to whom?'.
  2. To cut off, as a vowel or a syllable
  3. conflate; smear together; blur the distinction between
    • 2014 July 10, “Because we’re worth it”, The Economist:
      As Ms Shafak summarises, “the state is privileged, all-powerful and yet paradoxically safeguarded as if it were a fragile entity in need of protection.” Between it and its citizens a gulf looms; conversely, officials elide its interests with their own.

Usage notesEdit

The third sense, “conflate”, seems to be a recent development. It is not recognized by dictionaries such as Merriam-Webster or the OED, and can be considered to be incorrect.[1] [2]


  1. ^ John Wells (2012-07-08), “elision (not!)”[1], retrieved 2016-01-11
  2. ^ Guy Keleny (2012-11-16), “When words acquire new meanings, it's best not to stand in the way”, The Independent[2]

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