elastic

1 of 2

adjective

elas·​tic i-ˈla-stik How to pronounce elastic (audio)
1
a
of a solid : capable of recovering size and shape after deformation
b
: relating to or being a collision between particles in which the total kinetic energy of the particles remains unchanged
2
: capable of recovering quickly especially from depression or disappointment
my elastic spirits revivedWilkie Collins
3
: capable of being easily stretched or expanded and resuming former shape : flexible
an elastic bandage
4
a
: capable of ready change or easy expansion or contraction : not rigid or constricted
an elastic concept
b
: receptive to new ideas : adaptable
an elastic mind
elastically adverb

elastic

2 of 2

noun

1
a
: easily stretched rubber usually prepared in cords, strings, or bands
2
a
: an elastic fabric usually made of yarns containing rubber
b
: something made from this fabric
Choose the Right Synonym for elastic

elastic, resilient, springy, flexible, supple mean able to endure strain without being permanently injured.

elastic implies the property of resisting deformation by stretching.

an elastic waistband

resilient implies the ability to recover shape quickly when the deforming force or pressure is removed.

a resilient innersole

springy stresses both the ease with which something yields to pressure and the quickness of its return to original shape.

the cake is done when the top is springy

flexible applies to something which may or may not be resilient or elastic but which can be bent or folded without breaking.

flexible plastic tubing

supple applies to something that can be readily bent, twisted, or folded without any sign of injury.

supple leather

Examples of elastic in a Sentence

Adjective when vacationing, we generally have very elastic daily sightseeing plans Noun She wrapped an elastic around the cards.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
They are also meant to sit higher on the hip and don’t contain that too-tight elastic detail at the edge, saving you from feeling cut off at the top of your leg. Samantha Sutton, StyleCaster, 12 July 2024 Juno, her 2021 debut album, snapped with elastic rhythms and production that bounced like a rubber ball—a sonic representation of her rainbow styling and seemingly sunny disposition. Jordan Bassett, SPIN, 12 July 2024
Noun
Plus, they’re designed with a handy elastic to wrap my tresses securely without fear of falling. Laura Jackson, Vogue, 9 July 2024 Each cover measures eight feet, with one end being cinched with elastic to provide an efficient closure, and the other end remaining open for easy installation. Claudia Williams, Architectural Digest, 27 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for elastic 

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

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

New Latin elasticus, from Late Greek elastos ductile, beaten, from Greek elaunein to drive, beat out; probably akin to Greek ēlythe he went, Old Irish luid

First Known Use

Adjective

1674, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1847, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of elastic was in 1674

Dictionary Entries Near elastic

Cite this Entry

“Elastic.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elastic. Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

elastic

1 of 2 adjective
elas·​tic i-ˈlas-tik How to pronounce elastic (audio)
1
a
: capable of returning to original shape or size after being stretched, pressed, or squeezed together
sponges are elastic
b
: capable of indefinite expansion
gases are elastic substances
2
: able to recover quickly especially from sadness or disappointment
youthful, elastic spirit
3
: capable of being changed : flexible
an elastic plan
elasticity
i-ˌlas-ˈtis-ət-ē
ˌē-ˌlas-
noun

elastic

2 of 2 noun
1
2
a
: an elastic fabric usually made of yarns containing rubber
b
: something made from elastic fabric

Medical Definition

elastic

1 of 2 adjective
elas·​tic i-ˈlas-tik How to pronounce elastic (audio)
1
a
of a solid : capable of recovering size and shape after deformation
b
of a liquid : capable of resisting compression
c
of a gas : capable of indefinite expansion
2
: capable of being easily stretched or expanded and resuming former shape
elastically adverb

elastic

2 of 2 noun
1
a
: easily stretched rubber usually prepared in cords, strings, or bands
b
: a band of elastic used especially in orthodontics
also : one placed around a tooth at the gumline in effecting its nonsurgical removal
2
a
: an elastic fabric usually made of yarns containing rubber
b
: something made from this fabric

More from Merriam-Webster on elastic

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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