el·e·va·tor | \ˈe-lə-ˌvā-tər \

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

c : grain elevator

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

The incident begins with Ulis apparently holding the elevator for his friends. azcentral, "Video: Phoenix Suns' Devin Booker, Tyler Ulis involved in elevator fight in 2017," 13 July 2018 Back in Washington, Mr. Roberts, making an escape into a Senate elevator, said he was focused on agriculture. Elizabeth Williamson, New York Times, "As President Trump Bashes NATO, Republicans Are Largely Silent," 11 July 2018 Prisco Community Center will also be getting an elevator in the fall to improve accessibility, according to Ijams. Jessie Spangler, Aurora Beacon-News, "Expansion project at Prisco Community Center in Aurora to be completed this month," 9 July 2018 Their against-all-odds rescue involved each of them being lifted in a narrow, elevator-like chamber that was suspended by a cable into a hole drilled through solid rock. Chris Kraul And Jorge Poblete, Anchorage Daily News, "Once trapped themselves, Chilean miners have some advice for Thai boys stuck in cave," 7 July 2018 Their against-all-odds rescue involved each of them being lifted in a narrow, elevator-like chamber that was suspended by a cable into a hole drilled through solid rock. Chris Kraul, latimes.com, "Once trapped underground themselves, Chilean miners have some advice for the Thai boys stuck in a cave," 6 July 2018 That vessel, called the Martha’s Vineyard, has experienced numerous and repeated problems, including on Wednesday when its elevator malfunctioned, briefly trapping seven passengers. Matt Rocheleau, BostonGlobe.com, "Mechanical problems force cancellation of two Steamship Authority ferry trips," 8 June 2018 Additional work is expected after completion of the first phase, including repainting the tower and replacing its three elevators. Christine Clarridge, The Seattle Times, "First look: Space Needle unveils nearly complete glass observation deck," 25 May 2018 The garage design is also notable for its glass-front elevators. Lori Weisberg, sandiegouniontribune.com, "San Diego airport adds more parking spaces with three-level, high-tech garage," 17 May 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

23 Oct 2018

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 \

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 \

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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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).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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