Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Omission of a sound that would normally be pronounced in speaking a word.
  • noun The combination of two syllables into one for the purposes of poetic scansion.
  • noun The act or an instance of omission.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A striking or cutting off; specifically, in grammar, the cutting off or suppression of a vowel or syllable, naturally or for the sake of euphony or meter, especially at the end of a word when the next word begins with a vowel; more generally, the suppression of any part of a word in speech or writing: as, in “th' embattled plain” there is an elision of e; in “I'll not do it” there is an elision of wi.
  • noun Division; separation.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The deliberate omission of something.
  • noun The omission of a letter or syllable between two words; sometimes marked with an apostrophe.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a deliberate act of omission
  • noun omission of a sound between two words (usually a vowel and the end of one word or the beginning of the next)

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin ēlīsiō, ēlīsiōn-, from ēlīsus, past participle of ēlīdere, to strike out; see elide.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From elide.

Examples

  • The only way around mathematically brutal elision is to cheat by adding a picture or link -- fodder for the ADD crowd who will actually go to prominent writers 'blogs and complain about having to read "paragraphs."

    Archive 2010-01-01

  • The only way around mathematically brutal elision is to cheat by adding a picture or link -- fodder for the ADD crowd who will actually go to prominent writers 'blogs and complain about having to read "paragraphs."

    The Quality of Meter

  • In addition to that, the reaction of most of my learners (I do believe we should always take our context into account so I need to talk about my learners) when they are first taught about the rhythm of the language, liaisons and elision is of shock and indignation.

    P is for Pronunciation « An A-Z of ELT

  • Syncope, in the sense of contraction or elision, is also the name of a poetic device used for securing the cadence of a line, or making the line fit into the syllable pattern of the stanza.

    Ildiko Csengei

  • Now, that strikes me as something of a just-so story; if that sort of elision is standard with what’s more important, why don’t we also see it attested with other similar constructions, such as what’s most interesting or what’s more notable?

    The open secret of sentential adverbs « Motivated Grammar

  • Now, that strikes me as something of a just-so story; if that sort of elision is standard with what’s more important, why don’t we also see it attested with other similar constructions, such as what’s most interesting or what’s more notable?

    2010 March « Motivated Grammar

  • Another elision is the humdrum and the sinister: triviality is the harbinger of evil, and Ishiguro's prose from the outset is conspicuously dull with trivia.

    Rereading: Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

  • The OED has a nice example from Mason's English Grammar of 1876 which shows how the idea of elision was still present in people's minds : 'It is an unmeaning process to put the apostrophe after the possessive plural s as birds', because no vowel has been dropped there'.

    Archive 2008-04-01

  • The OED has a nice example from Mason's English Grammar of 1876 which shows how the idea of elision was still present in people's minds : 'It is an unmeaning process to put the apostrophe after the possessive plural s as birds', because no vowel has been dropped there'.

    On possessive apostrophes

  • Indeed, it's the kind of elision hoary old lefties like me make when we say that 'the poor pay more tax', and one of which your newfound friends at the Adam Smith Institute would probably not approve.

    Will the Lib Dems stick up for their own policy?

Comments

New comments are temporarily disabled while we update our database.

  • I like the French pronunciation of this word.

    August 20, 2008

  • Elision was used in Greek to avoid pausis, a glottal stop between two vowels, which they considered ugly. Hence we got silly constructs like ta auta becoming tauta, rendering the word for 'the same things' virtually identical to the one for 'that' with the minor exception of having an unused breathing mark left in the middle of the word.

    August 20, 2008