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EXPLAIN

Pronunciation (US): 

 Dictionary entry overview: What does explain mean? 

EXPLAIN (verb)
  The verb EXPLAIN has 3 senses:

1. make plain and comprehensible
2. define
3. serve as a reason or cause or justification of

  Familiarity information: EXPLAIN used as a verb is uncommon.


 Dictionary entry details 


EXPLAIN (verb)


Sense 1explain [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Make plain and comprehensible

Classified under:

Verbs of telling, asking, ordering, singing

Synonyms:

explain; explicate

Context example:

He explained the laws of physics to his students

Hypernyms (to "explain" is one way to...):

inform (impart knowledge of some fact, state or affairs, or event to)

Troponyms (each of the following is one way to "explain"):

interpret; rede (give an interpretation or explanation to)

account for (give reasons for)

naturalize (explain with reference to nature)

clarify; clear up; elucidate (make clear and (more) comprehensible)

comment (explain or interpret something)

Sentence frames:

Somebody ----s something
Somebody ----s somebody
Something ----s something
Somebody ----s that CLAUSE

Sentence example:

Sam and Sue explain the movie


Sense 2explain [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Define

Classified under:

Verbs of telling, asking, ordering, singing

Context example:

The committee explained their plan for fund-raising to the Dean

Hypernyms (to "explain" is one way to...):

say; state; tell (express in words)

Sentence frame:

Somebody ----s that CLAUSE

Sentence example:

They explain that there was a traffic accident


Sense 3explain [BACK TO TOP]

Meaning:

Serve as a reason or cause or justification of

Classified under:

Verbs of telling, asking, ordering, singing

Synonyms:

excuse; explain

Context examples:

Your need to sleep late does not excuse your late arrival at work / Her recent divorce may explain her reluctance to date again

Hypernyms (to "explain" is one way to...):

justify; vindicate (show to be right by providing justification or proof)

Troponyms (each of the following is one way to "explain"):

alibi (exonerate by means of an alibi)

Sentence frame:

Something ----s something


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 EXPLAIN: related words searches 

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