(adjective, verb)


1. marked by complexity and richness of detail

- an elaborate lace pattern

Similar word(s): fancy, luxuriant

2. developed or executed with care and in minute detail

- the elaborate register of the inhabitants prevented tax evasion

- the carefully elaborated theme

Similar word(s): careful, detailed, elaborated

Sentences with elaborate as an adjective:

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

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


1. 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

Similar word(s): dilate, enlarge, expand, expatiate, exposit, expound, lucubrate

Definition categories: communication, clarify, elucidate

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

- The bee elaborates honey

Definition categories: creation, create, make, produce

3. make more complex, intricate, or richer

Similar word(s): complicate, rarify, refine

Definition categories: change, alter, modify

4. work out in detail

- elaborate a plan

Definition categories: change, develop

Sentences with elaborate as a verb:

- What do you mean you didn't come home last night? Would you care to elaborate?

- Could you elaborate on the plot for your novel for me?