Definitions for elaborateɪˈlæb ər ɪt; -əˌreɪt

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word elaborate

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

e•lab•o•rateɪˈlæb ər ɪt; -əˌreɪt(adj.; v.)-rat•ed, -rat•ing.

  1. (adj.)worked out in great detail; painstaking:

    elaborate preparations.

  2. ornate, showy, or gaudy:

    an elaborate costume.

  3. (v.t.)to work out in minute detail.

  4. to develop or expand.

  5. to produce or develop by labor.

  6. (v.i.)to add details or information; expand (usu. fol. by on):

    to elaborate on an idea.

Origin of elaborate:

1600–10; < L ēlabōrātus, ptp. of ēlabōrāre to take pains, bestow effort on =ē-e - +labōrāre to work, der. of laborlabor


Princeton's WordNet

  1. elaborate, luxuriant(adj)

    marked by complexity and richness of detail

    "an elaborate lace pattern"

  2. detailed, elaborate, elaborated(verb)

    developed or executed with care and in minute detail

    "a detailed plan"; "the elaborate register of the inhabitants prevented tax evasion"- John Buchan; "the carefully elaborated theme"

  3. elaborate, lucubrate, expatiate, exposit, enlarge, flesh out, expand, expound, dilate(verb)

    add details, as to an account or idea; clarify the meaning of and discourse in a learned way, usually in writing

    "She elaborated on the main ideas in her dissertation"

  4. elaborate(verb)

    produce from basic elements or sources; change into a more developed product

    "The bee elaborates honey"

  5. complicate, refine, rarify, elaborate(verb)

    make more complex, intricate, or richer

    "refine a design or pattern"

  6. elaborate, work out(verb)

    work out in detail

    "elaborate a plan"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. elaborate(adjective)ɪˈlæb ər ɪt; v. -əˌreɪt

    complicated and detailed

    an elaborate hoax; elaborate explanations

  2. elaborate(verb)ɪˈlæb ər ɪt; v. -əˌreɪt

    to explain more fully

    Please elaborate on your comments.; He then elaborated his theory.


  1. elaborate(Verb)

    (used with on when used with an object) To give further detail or explanation (about).

  2. elaborate(Adjective)

    Highly complex, detailed, or sophisticated

    After reading a long, elaborate description, I was impressed but no wiser.

  3. elaborate(Adjective)

    intricate, fancy, flashy, or showy

    I stared for hours at the elaborate pattern in the rug.

  4. Origin: 1575, from elaboratus, past participle of elaboro, from e- + labor. More at e-, labour.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Elaborate(adj)

    wrought with labor; finished with great care; studied; executed with exactness or painstaking; as, an elaborate discourse; an elaborate performance; elaborate research

  2. Elaborate(verb)

    to produce with labor

  3. Elaborate(verb)

    to perfect with painstaking; to improve or refine with labor and study, or by successive operations; as, to elaborate a painting or a literary work

British National Corpus

  1. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'elaborate' in Adjectives Frequency: #844

Translations for elaborate

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


to work out or describe (a plan etc) in detail

He elaborated his theory.

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