elliptical

adjective
el·​lip·​ti·​cal | \ i-ˈlip-ti-kəl How to pronounce elliptical (audio) , e- \
variants: or elliptic \ i-​ˈlip-​tik How to pronounce elliptical (audio) , e-​ \

Definition of elliptical

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : of, relating to, or shaped like an ellipse
2a : of, relating to, or marked by ellipsis or an ellipsis
b(1) : of, relating to, or marked by extreme economy of speech or writing
(2) : of or relating to deliberate obscurity (as of literary or conversational style)

elliptical

noun
plural ellipticals

Definition of elliptical (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : elliptical galaxy In Hubble's scheme, galaxies are divided into ellipticals and spirals.— Roberto G. Abraham et al.
2 : elliptical trainer Ellipticals move in a smooth, oval motion, like riding a bike standing up, and offer great features like your beloved treadmill.— Monique Savin

Other Words from elliptical

Adjective

elliptically \ i-​ˈlip-​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce elliptical (audio) , e-​ \ adverb

Examples of elliptical in a Sentence

Adjective The moon follows an elliptical path around the Earth. a writer with an elliptical style
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The planet follows an elliptical orbit around the sun, rather than a circular orbit. NBC News, 5 Jan. 2022 That tilt causes different parts of the Earth to receive more or less sunlight as the planet traces its annual elliptical orbit around our host star—in other words, the tilt gives Earth its seasons. Aylin Woodward, WSJ, 21 Dec. 2021 Juno’s highly elliptical path, pitched up at almost a 90-degree angle to the orbits of Jupiter’s moons, passes over the planet’s north and south poles. New York Times, 14 June 2021 Because the moon takes an elliptical orbit around the Earth, at different times the moon is closer or farther away. Angela Eichhorst, CNN, 18 Dec. 2021 The spacecraft flies on an unusual elliptical orbit of Jupiter, which takes it far from the planet only to swing in close every 43 days. Jamie Carter, Forbes, 6 Sep. 2021 The leaves are elliptical with veins curving toward the tip. Chicago Tribune Staff, chicagotribune.com, 30 Apr. 2021 Because the moon’s month-long orbit around Earth is elliptical, there are points along its journey when it’s closer and farther away. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, 31 Mar. 2021 The tale that Horvát has to tell is elliptical, inward, and unrushed, played out on the smallest of scales. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, 15 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun From there, the former White House official set up a home gym in his basement with dumbbells and an elliptical. Janine Henni, PEOPLE.com, 7 Jan. 2022 Over the past century, most home-workout equipment — the treadmill, the exercise bike, the elliptical, the Mirror, the Tonal — is centered around creating identical lean and lithe bodies. Diana Budds, Curbed, 4 Nov. 2021 Just like with other new forms of exercise, start out slowly on the elliptical. Korin Miller, Good Housekeeping, 12 Oct. 2021 Adults, freed from offices and their old, rigid hours, are jogging at noon, instead of going nowhere on an elliptical or Peloton in the tiny office gym. Amanda Long, Washington Post, 29 Sep. 2021 Speaking in a higher-than-usual voice that rumbles with torment, rage and pop gravitas, Leung sets the vengeful tone for a drama that’s Oedipal in its overtones and elliptical in its structure. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 31 Aug. 2021 Speaking in a higher-than-usual voice that rumbles with torment, rage and pop gravitas, Leung sets the vengeful tone for a drama that’s Oedipal in its overtones and elliptical in its structure. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 31 Aug. 2021 Speaking in a higher-than-usual voice that rumbles with torment, rage and pop gravitas, Leung sets the vengeful tone for a drama that’s Oedipal in its overtones and elliptical in its structure. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 31 Aug. 2021 Speaking in a higher-than-usual voice that rumbles with torment, rage and pop gravitas, Leung sets the vengeful tone for a drama that’s Oedipal in its overtones and elliptical in its structure. Tribune News Service, cleveland, 31 Aug. 2021

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

Adjective

1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1936, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for elliptical

Adjective

Greek elleiptikos defective, marked by ellipsis, from elleipein

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Time Traveler for elliptical

Time Traveler

The first known use of elliptical was in 1656

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Dictionary Entries Near elliptical

ellipsometer

elliptical

elliptical galaxy

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Statistics for elliptical

Last Updated

7 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Elliptical.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elliptical. Accessed 23 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for elliptical

elliptical

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of elliptical

: shaped like a flattened circle : oval
: using few words and therefore hard to understand

elliptical

adjective
el·​lip·​ti·​cal | \ i-ˈlip-ti-kəl How to pronounce elliptical (audio) \
variants: or elliptic \ -​tik \

Kids Definition of elliptical

: having the shape of an ellipse an elliptical orbit

More from Merriam-Webster on elliptical

Nglish: Translation of elliptical for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of elliptical for Arabic Speakers

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