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

The elevator expelled them into the lobby, the nodding doorman held the heavy oak and brass door open, and the city night gathered them both into its cool embrace. Adam O’fallon Price, Harper's magazine, "The Maid’s Story," 10 June 2019 Planners estimated the inclined elevator would be able to move 2080 people per hour. oregonlive.com, "Inclined elevator connecting future MAX line to Marquam Hill remains on TriMet’s short list," 10 June 2019 The Planter’s Co-Op elevator isn’t located at the port. Lynn Brezosky, ExpressNews.com, "Trade war with China is hitting Texas grain farmers," 6 June 2019 If the elevator accelerates quickly enough, the beam visibly bends toward the floor. Devin Powell, Discover Magazine, "How to Understand Einstein's Theory of Gravity," 24 May 2019 Many on Twitter also shared similar sentiments that the elevator needs to be fixed by the time BBT is over. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "There's a Crazy 'Big Bang Theory' Fan Theory That's Taking Over the Internet Right Now," 23 Aug. 2018 After dropping toddlers at child care, one parent headed up Strawbridge’s lacy metal staircase to the treadmills, while another took the elevator to the fourth-floor coworking office. Inga Saffron, Philly.com, "Ardmore's Suburban Square shows what's in store for downtowns as shopping moves online," 31 May 2018 The Mandalay Bay hotel, where gunman Stephen Paddock was a guest, put 24-hour security guards at the elevator banks shortly after the shooting. Hugo Martin, latimes.com, "Robots roam Pechanga Resort Casino to enhance security," 6 July 2018 Rawitch said water was shut off in the area to stop the leak and that one elevator bank and the Sizzle & Cheese concession stand would be closed for games Saturday and Sunday against the Miami Marlins while repairs are ongoing. Scott Bordow, azcentral, "Chase Field springs a leak during Friday's Diamondbacks-Marlins game," 2 June 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

19 Jun 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).


to take the place or position of

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