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 helix staircase was removed in 1983 to make way for new elevators, according to the Artcurial auction house. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Eiffel Tower's Original Staircase Is for Sale," 27 Nov. 2018 The metal corkscrew was removed in 1983 when an elevator took its place. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Want a piece of the Eiffel Tower? That’ll cost you $45K," 14 Nov. 2018 Still Beneath a Pillow, a chalk-and–oil stick photograph in the back of the elevator foyer. Emily Farra, Vogue, "14,000 Square Feet, 5 Floors, 35 Artworks, and 1 Debut Fragrance: Chanel’s New Flagship by the Numbers," 14 Nov. 2018 So some new-home communities are including elevators as an option. Tony Bizjak, The Seattle Times, "10 hot home innovations — from dog showers to doorbell cams," 26 Oct. 2018 Think: Creepy twins, elevators full of blood, ghost parties, and a really disturbing bathtub scene. Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "The Best '80s Horror Movies That Are Still Terrifying Today," 23 Oct. 2018 After receiving this alert, Maria and I confronted Senator Flake in his office elevator. Teen Vogue, "Ana María Archila on Confronting Senator Flake in the Elevator," 5 Oct. 2018 The Mercury News reports that, as part of the conditions of the approval, the test elevator will be closed to the public, and no cars will be able to move from the garage to the street in order to keep the project from impacting traffic. Dami Lee, The Verge, "Boring Company gets approval to build a tunnel connecting a garage to a hyperloop," 13 Sep. 2018 Huda Beauty is definitely on a hot streak — this week alone the brand has launched new Demi Matte Cream lipsticks, teased a new eye shadow palette, and announced an elevator makeup challenge with a $5,000 prize. Macaela Mackenzie, Allure, "The New Huda Beauty Matte Perfection Primer Is Made Especially for Oily and Acne-Prone Skin," 19 July 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

4 Dec 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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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

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a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

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