be·​la·​bor bi-ˈlā-bər How to pronounce belabor (audio)
belabored; belaboring; belabors

transitive verb

: to attack verbally
If I had been ill-natured, I should have shown up the little great man, who had once belabored me in his feeble way.Oliver Wendell Holmes
: to beat soundly
… ancient battles in which the combatants belabored one another with swords, staffs, cudgels, halberds and other heavy-duty weapons until the blood flowed …James Rogers
: to explain or insist on excessively
her habit of belaboring the obvious
He needlessly belabored the point.

Examples of belabor in a Sentence

Her habit of belaboring the obvious makes her a very boring speaker. Please don't belabor the point. He uses his newspaper column to belabor writers for even the most minor grammatical errors.
Recent Examples on the Web The segment is supposed to depict her loneliness and isolation, but the wordless 10 minutes is overlong and dull, belaboring a point that could have been made in less than half the time. Aramide Tinubu, Variety, 26 Apr. 2024 What should be a sparkling recounting of a pivotal moment in U.S. history is flattened, becoming a mind-numbing and belabored affair of wig-wearing men shouting at each other in dark rooms. Aramide Tinubu, Variety, 12 Apr. 2024 Jones belabored this point as well, once again citing packing too much and how a broken zipper can quickly turn messy if security is unable to quickly re-pack your belongings. Kelsey Chapman, ABC News, 18 Mar. 2024 Rather than belabor the premise, NYC loyalists Wiki and MIKE use it to frame an experiential dialogue. Pitchfork, 11 Dec. 2023 See all Example Sentences for belabor 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'belabor.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1596, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of belabor was in 1596

Dictionary Entries Near belabor

Cite this Entry

“Belabor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


be·​la·​bor bi-ˈlā-bər How to pronounce belabor (audio)
: to keep explaining or insisting on to excess
I don't want to belabor the point

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