el·​e·​va·​tor | \ ˈe-lə-ˌvā-tər How to pronounce elevator (audio) \

Definition of elevator

1 : one that raises or lifts something up: such as
a : an endless belt or chain conveyor with cleats, scoops, or buckets for raising material
b : a cage or platform and its hoisting machinery for conveying people or things to different levels
2 : a movable airfoil usually attached to the tailplane of an airplane for controlling pitch — see airplane illustration

Examples of elevator in a Sentence

We took the elevator to the 10th floor.

Recent Examples on the Web

Now employees can drive their vehicles right into the structure and don’t have to take an elevator or stairs back down to street level to get to the office. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "We don’t need more dedicated places where cars can go fast," 20 Dec. 2018 The pair planned a renovation that included an overhaul of at least one of the elevators, said a person involved with the deal. Eliot Brown, WSJ, "WeWork’s CEO Makes Millions as Landlord to WeWork," 16 Jan. 2019 Opened in 2017, The Maven flaunts contemporary, emerging and established Colorado artists in every nook, down to the elevators. Stephanie Granada, Sunset, "12 Incredible Hotels for Art Lovers," 22 Jan. 2018 Ana Maria Archila, the Queens woman who confronted Senator Jeff Flake in an elevator on Capitol Hill during the Kavanaugh hearings, will join Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at the State of the Union tomorrow. Bridget Read, Vogue, "Ana Maria Archila, Who Confronted Jeff Flake During the Kavanaugh Hearings, Will Accompany Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to the State of the Union," 4 Feb. 2019 For those who don't care to climb all the way to the fourth floor, an elevator provides access to every floor. Maya Mcdowell, House Beautiful, "The 1920s New York Mansion of the Vanderbilts Is for Sale," 2 Feb. 2019 The cause of the elevator mishap is under investigation. Verena Dobnik, The Seattle Times, "Woman rescued after 3 days in New York City elevator," 28 Jan. 2019 Think of this move as an elevator with 3 levels: top, middle, bottom. SELF, "Squat and Plank Full-Body Workout," 31 Dec. 2018 Immediately, the miniseries gets this story underway as tiny rabbit Fiver (Nicholas Hoult) has a prophetic vision of rabbits being chopped in half by bulldozers and fields welling with blood, bringing to mind the elevator in The Shining. Aja Romano, Vox, "Netflix’s new Watership Down proves the beloved children’s classic was a horror story all along," 30 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'elevator.' 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 elevator

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for elevator

Last Updated

13 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for elevator

The first known use of elevator was in 1646

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More Definitions for elevator



English Language Learners Definition of elevator

: a machine used for carrying people and things to different levels in a building
: a tall building for storing grain


el·​e·​va·​tor | \ ˈe-lə-ˌvā-tər How to pronounce elevator (audio) \

Kids Definition of elevator

1 : a floor or little room that can be raised or lowered for carrying people or goods from one level to another
2 : a device (as an endless belt) for raising material


el·​e·​va·​tor | \ ˈel-ə-ˌvāt-ər How to pronounce elevator (audio) \

Medical Definition of elevator

1 : a dental instrument for removing teeth or the roots of teeth which cannot be gripped with a forceps
2 : a surgical instrument for raising a depressed part (as a bone) or for separating contiguous parts

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More from Merriam-Webster on elevator

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with elevator

Spanish Central: Translation of elevator

Nglish: Translation of elevator for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of elevator for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about elevator

Comments on elevator

What made you want to look up elevator? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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