What's the difference between revised, abridged, and unabridged editions of books?

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I'm looking for unabridged editions of some books for school, but all I can find is revised or abridged. Do revised and abridged mean the same thing, or are they different?

Best Answer:  Revised means that substantive changes were made from an earlier edition. Usually this means the addition of new material, but it can also mean corrections for the times. A book about your legal rights may need revision if the laws have changed since it was first published, so the publisher will have the writer update the text for a revised edition.

Abridged means "cut." An abridged novel, for example, may have certain scenes cut out of it if the abridging editor decides you don't need those scenes to understand the story.

I teach college courses, and I want my students to be reading from the same text, so do make sure that you're getting the same edition that your teacher/professor wants you to have. If you can't tell, then certainly "revised" is a safer bet than "abridged."

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