clarify

verb
clar·​i·​fy | \ ˈkler-ə-ˌfī How to pronounce clarify (audio) , ˈkla-rə- \
clarified; clarifying

Definition of clarify

transitive verb

1 : to make understandable clarify a subject The president was forced to clarify his position on the issue.
2 : to free of confusion needs time to clarify his thoughts
3 : to make (a liquid or something liquefied) clear or pure usually by freeing from suspended matter clarify syrup

intransitive verb

: to become clear waiting for the present muddled diplomatic situation to clarifyNewsweek

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Other Words from clarify

clarification \ ˌkler-​ə-​fə-​ˈkā-​shən How to pronounce clarification (audio) , ˌkla-​rə-​ \ noun
clarifier \ ˈkler-​ə-​ˌfī(-​ə)r How to pronounce clarifier (audio) , ˈkla-​rə-​ \ noun

Synonyms for clarify

Synonyms

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Examples of clarify in a Sentence

Can you clarify exactly what it is you're proposing? Her explanation did not clarify matters much. The president was forced to clarify his position on the issue. The committee clarified the manager's duties. a substance used to clarify wine
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Recent Examples on the Web The latest details clarify that the legislation would override Hong Kong’s own laws if there was a conflict, with some cases even being prosecuted by the central government. Iain Marlow And Natalie Lung / Bloomberg, Time, "Hong Kong Leader Says She Still Hasn’t Seen Draft Text of Security Law," 23 June 2020 Will Vesta’s climactic encounter with her reclusive neighbors clarify what’s really happening? Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, "Ottessa Moshfegh’s Pursuit of Disgust," 23 June 2020 Updated shortly after publication to clarify that the Linksys Velop AX4200 will ship this fall, not immediately. Michael Brown, PCWorld, "Linksys announces $150 Max-Stream AX1800 Wi-Fi 6 router," 16 June 2020 As of Saturday evening, the Oregon Health Authority had not updated its online testing guidance to clarify eligibility. oregonlive, "Bonamici wants clearer coronavirus testing guidelines in Oregon after Latino couple denied," 14 June 2020 The board is working to clarify leadership roles of system leaders and chancellors. Devi Shastri, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "The only finalist for the UW System's top job is a white man, and critics say his credentials and vision for the future are lackluster," 11 June 2020 The World Health Organization moved Tuesday to clarify its position on whether people without symptoms are widely spreading the new coronavirus, saying much remains unknown about asymptomatic transmission. BostonGlobe.com, "WHO official walks back remarks on virus’s spread," 10 June 2020 The World Health Organization moved Tuesday to clarify its position on whether people without symptoms are widely spreading the new coronavirus, saying much remains unknown about asymptomatic transmission. Author: William Wan, Miriam Berger, Anchorage Daily News, "Are asymptomatic people spreading the coronavirus? A WHO official’s words spark confusion, debate," 9 June 2020 Murtaugh pressed former Biden to clarify his position. Caitlin Conant, CBS News, "2020 Daily Trail Markers: Biden meets with George Floyd's family," 8 June 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clarify.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of clarify

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 3

History and Etymology for clarify

Middle English clarifien, from Anglo-French clarifier, from Late Latin clarificare, from Latin clarus clear — more at clear

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Time Traveler for clarify

Time Traveler

The first known use of clarify was in the 14th century

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Statistics for clarify

Last Updated

4 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Clarify.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/clarify. Accessed 12 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for clarify

clarify

verb
How to pronounce clarify (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of clarify

: to make (something) easier to understand
: to make (a liquid) purer or easier to see through

clarify

verb
clar·​i·​fy | \ ˈkler-ə-ˌfī How to pronounce clarify (audio) \
clarified; clarifying

Kids Definition of clarify

1 : to make or to become pure or clear clarify a liquid
2 : to make or become more easily understood clarify a statement

clarify

verb
clar·​i·​fy | \ ˈklar-ə-ˌfī How to pronounce clarify (audio) \
clarified; clarifying

Medical Definition of clarify

transitive verb

: to make (as a liquid) clear or pure usually by freeing from suspended matter clarify sewage

intransitive verb

: to become clear

Other Words from clarify

clarification \ ˌklar-​ə-​fə-​ˈkā-​shən How to pronounce clarification (audio) \ noun
clarifier \ ˈklar-​ə-​ˌfī(-​ə)r How to pronounce clarifier (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on clarify

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for clarify

Spanish Central: Translation of clarify

Nglish: Translation of clarify for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of clarify for Arabic Speakers

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