explain away


explain away

transitive verb

Definition of EXPLAIN AWAY

1
:  to get rid of by or as if by explanation
2
:  to minimize the significance of by or as if by explanation <explains his faults, but does not try to explain them away — M. K. Spears>

Examples of EXPLAIN AWAY

  1. <after the surprise attack, military leaders struggled to explain away the nation's unpreparedness>
  2. <tried to explain away his adulterous affairs by saying that men are promiscuous by nature>

First Known Use of EXPLAIN AWAY

1704

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