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tr.v. o·blit·er·at·ed, o·blit·er·at·ing, o·blit·er·ates
1. To remove or destroy completely so as to leave no trace. See Synonyms at annihilate.
2. To render invisible or unreadable, as by erasing or marking over: "The name [on the door] had been crudely obliterated with thick, heavy strokes of black paint" (F. Paul Wilson).
3. Medicine To remove completely (a body organ or part), as by surgery, disease, or radiation.
[Latin oblitterāre, oblitterāt-, to erase, from ob litterās (scrībere), (to write) over letters (ob, over; see ob- + litterās, accusative pl. of littera, letter) and from oblītus, past participle of oblīvīscī, to forget; see oblivion.]
o·blit′er·a′tive (-ə-rā′tĭv, -ər-ə-tĭv) adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.