Explain

  • 1 explain — 1 Explain, expound, explicate, elucidate, interpret, construe are comparable when they mean to make oneself or another understand the meaning of something. Explain, the most general term, implies a making of something plain or intelligible to… …

    New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • 2 Explain — Ex*plain ([e^]ks*pl[=a]n ), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Explained}([e^]ks*pl[=a]nd ); p. pr. & vb. n. {Explaining}.] [L. explandare to flatten, spread out, explain; ex out + plandare to make level or plain, planus plain: cf. OF. esplaner, explaner. See… …

    The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • 3 explain — [ek splān′, iksplān′] vt. [ME explanen < L explanare, to flatten < ex , out + planare, to make level < planus, level (see PLANE2): sp. infl. by PLAIN1] 1. to make clear, plain, or understandable 2. to give the meaning or interpretation… …

    English World dictionary

  • 4 explain — (v.) early 15c., from L. explanare to make level, smooth out; also to explain, make clear (see EXPLANATION (Cf. explanation)). Originally explane, spelling altered by influence of plain. In 17c., occasionally used more literally, of the unfolding …

    Etymology dictionary

  • 5 explain — ► VERB 1) make clear by giving a detailed description. 2) give a reason or justification for. 3) (explain oneself) excuse or justify one s motives or conduct. 4) (explain away) minimize the significance of (something awkward) by giving an excuse… …

    English terms dictionary

  • 6 Explain — Ex*plain , v. i. To give an explanation. [1913 Webster] …

    The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • 7 explain — I verb account for, annotate, assign a meaning to, cause to be understood, clarify, clear of obscurity, clear up, decipher, define, demonstrate, describe, disentangle, elucidate, enlighten, enucleate, exemplify, expedire, explanare, explicate,… …

    Law dictionary

  • 8 explain — [v] make clear; give a reason for account for, analyze, annotate, break down, bring out, clarify, clear up, construe, decipher, define, demonstrate, describe, diagram, disclose, elucidate, excuse, explicate, expound, get across*, go into detail,… …

    New thesaurus

  • 9 explain — ex|plain W1S1 [ıkˈspleın] v [I and T] [Date: 1500 1600; : Latin; Origin: explanare to make level, unfold , from planus level, flat ] 1.) to tell someone about something in a way that is clear or easy to understand ▪ Our lawyer carefully explained …

    Dictionary of contemporary English

  • 10 explain — ex|plain [ ık spleın ] verb *** 1. ) transitive to tell someone something in a way that helps them understand it better: My full name is Juliet Avery, Juliet explained patiently. explain something to someone: The doctor explained the risks to me… …

    Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • 11 explain */*/*/ — UK [ɪkˈspleɪn] / US verb Word forms explain : present tense I/you/we/they explain he/she/it explains present participle explaining past tense explained past participle explained 1) a) [transitive] to tell someone something in a way that helps… …

    English dictionary

  • 12 explain — /Ik spleIn/ verb (I, T) 1 to make something clear or easy to understand: Our lawyer carefully explained the procedure. | explain (to sb) why/how/where etc: The librarian will explain how to use the catalogue system. | explain that: I explained… …

    Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • 13 explain — verb ADVERB ▪ in detail ▪ I explained the issues in great detail. ▪ fully ▪ The reasons for the accident have not been fully explained. ▪ adequately …

    Collocations dictionary

  • 14 explain — explainable, adj. explainer, explanator /ek spleuh nay teuhr/, n. /ik splayn /, v.t. 1. to make plain or clear; render understandable or intelligible: to explain an obscure point. 2. to make known in detail: to explain how to do something. 3. to… …

    Universalium

  • 15 explain — verb Etymology: Middle English explanen, from Latin explanare, literally, to make level, from ex + planus level, flat more at floor Date: 15th century transitive verb 1. a. to make known < explain the secret of your success > b. to make plain or… …

    New Collegiate Dictionary

  • 16 explain — [[t]ɪksple͟ɪn[/t]] ♦♦ explains, explaining, explained 1) VERB If you explain something, you give details about it or describe it so that it can be understood. [V n] Not every judge, however, has the ability to explain the law in simple terms...… …

    English dictionary

  • 17 explain*/*/*/ — [ɪkˈspleɪn] verb 1) [T] to tell someone something in a way that helps them to understand it better The doctor explained the risks to me before the operation.[/ex] I will try to explain how a car engine works.[/ex] He explained that he would be… …

    Dictionary for writing and speaking English

  • 18 explain — I (New American Roget s College Thesaurus) v. t. expound, solve, elucidate, resolve, fathom, account for; demonstrate, construe, interpret, define, describe, develop, detail, criticize, comment. See answer, attribution, interpretation. II (Roget… …

    English dictionary for students

  • 19 explain — /əkˈspleɪn / (say uhk splayn), /ɛk / (say ek ) verb (t) 1. to make plain or clear; render intelligible: to explain an obscure point. 2. to make known in detail: to explain how to do something; to explain a process. 3. to assign a meaning to;… …

    Australian English dictionary

  • 20 explain — v.tr. 1 make clear or intelligible with detailed information etc. (also absol. : let me explain). 2 (foll. by that + clause) say by way of explanation. 3 account for (one s conduct etc.). Phrases and idioms: explain away minimize the significance …

    Useful english dictionary