attrition

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at·tri·tion

 (ə-trĭsh′ən)
n.
1. A rubbing away or wearing down by friction.
2.
a. A gradual reduction in number or strength because of stress or military action.
b. A gradual reduction in personnel or membership because of resignation, retirement, or death, often viewed in contrast to reduction from layoffs.
3. Roman Catholic Church Repentance for sin motivated by fear of punishment rather than by love of God.

[Middle English attricioun, regret, breaking, from Old French attrition, abrasion, from Late Latin attrītiō, attrītiōn-, act of rubbing against, from Latin attrītus, past participle of atterere, to rub against : ad-, against; see ad- + terere, to rub; see terə- in Indo-European roots.]

at·tri′tion·al adj.

attrition

(əˈtrɪʃən)
n
1. the act of wearing away or the state of being worn away, as by friction
2. constant wearing down to weaken or destroy (often in the phrase war of attrition)
3. (Industrial Relations & HR Terms) Also called: natural wastage a decrease in the size of the workforce of an organization achieved by not replacing employees who retire or resign
4. (Physical Geography) geography the grinding down of rock particles by friction during transportation by water, wind, or ice. Compare abrasion3, corrasion
5. (Theology) theol sorrow for sin arising from fear of damnation, esp as contrasted with contrition, which arises purely from love of God
[C14: from Late Latin attrītiō a rubbing against something, from Latin atterere to weaken, from terere to rub]
atˈtritional adj
attritive adj

at•tri•tion

(əˈtrɪʃ ən)

n.
1. a reduction or decrease in numbers, size, or strength.
2. a wearing down or weakening of resistance, esp. as a result of continuous pressure or harassment: a war of attrition.
3. a gradual reduction in work force as when workers retire and are not replaced.
4. the act of rubbing against something; friction.
5. a wearing down or away by friction; abrasion.
[1325–75; Middle English < Latin attrītiō friction]
at•tri′tion•al, adj.
at•tri′tive (əˈtraɪ tɪv) adj.

attrition

The reduction of the effectiveness of a force caused by loss of personnel and materiel.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.attrition - erosion by frictionattrition - erosion by friction      
eating away, eroding, erosion, wearing, wearing away - (geology) the mechanical process of wearing or grinding something down (as by particles washing over it)
2.attrition - the wearing down of rock particles by friction due to water or wind or iceattrition - the wearing down of rock particles by friction due to water or wind or ice
rubbing, friction - the resistance encountered when one body is moved in contact with another
3.attrition - sorrow for sin arising from fear of damnationattrition - sorrow for sin arising from fear of damnation
regret, ruefulness, sorrow, rue - sadness associated with some wrong done or some disappointment; "he drank to drown his sorrows"; "he wrote a note expressing his regret"; "to his rue, the error cost him the game"
4.attrition - a wearing down to weaken or destroy; "a war of attrition"
decrease, lessening, drop-off - a change downward; "there was a decrease in his temperature as the fever subsided"; "there was a sharp drop-off in sales"
5.attrition - the act of rubbing together; wearing something down by friction
detrition, friction, rubbing - effort expended in moving one object over another with pressure

attrition

noun wearing down, harrying, weakening, harassment, thinning out, attenuation, debilitation a war of attrition against the government

attrition

noun
Theology. A feeling of regret for one's sins or misdeeds:
Translations

attrition

[əˈtrɪʃən] N
1. (= wearing away) → desgaste m
war of attritionguerra f de desgaste
2. (Ind, Univ) → amortización f de puestos

attrition

[əˈtrɪʃən] n
war of attrition → guerre f d'usure

attrition

n (lit, form)Abrieb m, → Zerreibung f; (fig)Zermürbung f; (Rel) → unvollkommene Reue, Attrition f (spec); war of attrition (Mil) → Zermürbungskrieg m

attrition

[əˈtrɪʃn] nusura (per attrito)
war of attrition → guerra di logoramento
References in periodicals archive ?
There were a few well-chosen and well-executed head blows as wells as numerous attritive actions against operating enemy troops, military camps and police outposts, making them suffer a casualty rate of more than a battalion,' he said.
When Dennis decides to get up in the morning and do outreach work, this 'decision' is the tenuous outcome of a recurring balancing act between the inspirational and attritive constituents that intimately permeate his life.
Churchill was well aware of the horrors of war and wrote before 1939 describing "the attritive slaughter of the trenches where combat had been reduced to a business like the stockyards of Chicago" and his actions showed that throughout the war he never forgot that.