\ i-ˈlōp How to pronounce elope (audio) \
eloped; eloping

Definition of elope

intransitive verb

1a : to run away secretly with the intention of getting married usually without parental consent … Waterman was a peevish child who grew into a defiant teenager, eloped at 18 largely to shock his father, and then—far too young—was a father himself.— Elizabeth Gilbert
b : to run away from one's spouse with a lover " … when they had been married nearly seven years, and were within a few weeks of the time when the brother's death would have adjusted all, she eloped with a younger man, and left him."— Charles Dickens
2a : to slip away : escape … might have mistaken him for … some scarecrow eloped from a cornfield.— Washington Irving
b : to leave a health-care or educational facility without permission or authorization …10 suicidal patients deemed 'high risk for suicide' eloped from the Emergency Department from October 2014 and February 2015.— Charles S. Clark Police in Ohio said this week that they gave a nursing home resident a ride and dropped him off at a gas station without ever knowing he was a dementia patient who had eloped.— Kimberly Marselas

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Other Words from elope

elopement \ i-​ˈlōp-​mənt How to pronounce elope (audio) \ noun, plural elopements
… the young couple at a nearby table sent over some of their dessert, a slice of cake specially ordered to celebrate their elopement. — David Massey …if the child is afraid of loud noises or crowded environments, a classroom could be intimidating and cause him to be anxious. He might engage in problematic behaviors such as elopement (running away), hand flapping, or yelling … — Erica Kearney
eloper noun, plural elopers
And of course, Las Vegas is no longer just for elopers. With all the elegant hotels springing up in Sin City, more couples are choosing to haul the whole wedding party out and do things up right. — John Winters

Examples of elope in a Sentence

The couple eloped in the middle of the night.
Recent Examples on the Web Two men court a woman, but the one Daddy doesn’t approve of tries to elope with her. Ed Stockly, Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: ‘My Fair Lady’; ‘Marry Poppins’," 19 Mar. 2021 Couples forced to elope or give up their dreams of weddings for 200 for smaller affairs still have their marriages to experience. Leanne Italie, Anchorage Daily News, "Rethinking life’s milestones with the end of the pandemic in sight," 9 Mar. 2021 Without the approval or support of their families, the lovebirds decide to elope. Veronica Villafañe, Forbes, "Univision Premieres 'La Hija Del Embajador,' Its Second Turkish Series On Primetime," 28 Feb. 2021 Emily Bugg and Billy Lewis got engaged in July 2019 and were set to marry in a 150 person wedding in October, but decided to elope at City Hall instead, according to NBC Chicago. NBC News, "Covid live updates: Latest news on vaccine approvals and bipartisan Covid relief bill," 3 Dec. 2020 Emily Bugg and Billy Lewis got engaged in July 2019 and were set to marry in a 150 person wedding in October, but decided to elope at City Hall instead, according to NBC Chicago. Alexander Smith, NBC news, "British government is first to approve Covid-19 vaccine, will roll out shots next week," 3 Dec. 2020 By the end of Part One, that group includes guitarist Chris Perez (Jesse Posey) with whom Selena would go on to elope against her family’s wishes. Washington Post, "‘Selena: The Series’ might be on the small screen, but it paints a bigger picture of the iconic Tejano singer’s life," 3 Dec. 2020 Since much of the cost of big-day celebrations is tied to headcount, couples who choose to elope cut back significantly on expenses. Lindsay Tigar, CNN Underscored, "How to elope beautifully — and safely — right now," 29 Oct. 2020 In his wedding message to Mike and Michele, a couple preparing to elope, Coach Payton stood in for the minister. Doug Maccash | Staff Writer, NOLA.com, "Cam Jordan birthday video delights fan, and 'genius company' gets a share. (Note: I'm cheaper)," 1 Oct. 2020

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

1593, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

History and Etymology for elope

Anglo-French aloper, esloper to abduct, run away

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Statistics for elope

Last Updated

2 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Elope.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elope. Accessed 19 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for elope



English Language Learners Definition of elope

: to run away secretly to get married


\ i-ˈlōp How to pronounce elope (audio) \
eloped; eloping

Kids Definition of elope

: to run away to be married

Other Words from elope

elopement \ -​mənt \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on elope

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for elope

Nglish: Translation of elope for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of elope for Arabic Speakers

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