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1575, from Late Latin ēlabōrātus (worked out), past participle of ēlabōrō (to work out), from ē- (out, forth, fully) + labor (work, toil, exertion). More at e-, labour.


  • Adjective: ĭlă'bərət, IPA(key): /ɪˈlæbəɹət/
    • (file)
  • Verb: ĭlă'bərāt, IPA(key): /ɪˈlæbəɹeɪt/


elaborate (comparative more elaborate, superlative most elaborate)

  1. Complex, detailed, or sophisticated.
    After reading a long, elaborate description, I was impressed but no wiser.
  2. Intricate, fancy, flashy, or showy.
    I stared for hours at the elaborate pattern in the rug.
    • 1907 August, Robert W[illiam] Chambers, chapter I, in The Younger Set, New York, N.Y.: D. Appleton & Company, OCLC 24962326:
      The house was a big elaborate limestone affair, evidently new. Winter sunshine sparkled on lace-hung casement, on glass marquise, and the burnished bronze foliations of grille and door.


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elaborate (third-person singular simple present elaborates, present participle elaborating, simple past and past participle elaborated)

  1. (transitive) to develop in detail or complexity
    • 1871, "Bismarck", All the Year Round (volume 5, page 129)
      [] by the time of the subsequent coronation, when the Prussian king put the crown on his own head in child-like belief of the obsolete doctrine called divine right, the untiring statesman had elaborated his scheme of reform.
    • 2009, Irene Silverblatt, “Foreword”, in Andrew B. Fisher and Matthew D. O'hara, editors, Imperial Subjects: Race and Identity in Colonial Latin America, page xi:
      The notion of blood purity was first elaborated in Europe, where it was used to separate Old Christians from Spain’s New Christians—women and men of Jewish and Muslim origin whose ancestors had converted to Christianity.
  2. (intransitive) (sometimes followed by on or upon, and then the object of the preposition) to expand/enlarge in detail
    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?





  1. second-person plural present indicative of elaborare
  2. second-person plural imperative of elaborare
  3. feminine plural of elaborato




  1. second-person plural present active imperative of ēlabōrō