So the editor wants to cut your epic 800-page history of the stapler to a 150-page summary instead. Don't cry — he just wants to abridge your masterpiece, trimming it down to the more readable essential elements.

Synonymous with abbreviate, condense and cut short, abridge comes from the Latin word abreviare, which means "to shorten." Although it's usually used in reference to wordy texts, one can also abridge or shorten a piece of clothing; a miniskirt is just an abridged version of the old floor length hoop skirt, for example. But abridging something isn't always good: If your civil rights are abridged, they've been lessened in some way.

Definitions of abridge

v lessen, diminish, or curtail

“the new law might abridge our freedom of expression”
Type of:
curb, curtail, cut back, restrict
place restrictions on

v reduce in scope while retaining essential elements

abbreviate, contract, cut, foreshorten, reduce, shorten
cut, edit, edit out
cut and assemble the components of
dilate, elaborate, enlarge, expand, expatiate, exposit, expound, flesh out, lucubrate
add details, as to an account or idea; clarify the meaning of and discourse in a learned way, usually in writing
show 4 types...
hide 4 types...
bowdlerise, bowdlerize, castrate, expurgate, shorten
edit by omitting or modifying parts considered indelicate
concentrate, condense, digest
make more concise
capsule, capsulise, capsulize, encapsulate
put in a short or concise form; reduce in volume
make smaller or shorter
Type of:
decrease, lessen, minify
make smaller

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