\ ē-ˈlüd How to pronounce elude (audio) \
eluded; eluding

Definition of elude

transitive verb

1 : to avoid adroitly : evade the mice eluded the traps managed to elude capture
2 : to escape the perception, understanding, or grasp of subtlety simply eludes them victory continued to elude us
3 : defy sense 2 it eludes explanation

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Choose the Right Synonym for elude

escape, avoid, evade, elude, shun, eschew mean to get away or keep away from something. escape stresses the fact of getting away or being passed by not necessarily through effort or by conscious intent. nothing escapes her sharp eyes avoid stresses forethought and caution in keeping clear of danger or difficulty. try to avoid past errors evade implies adroitness, ingenuity, or lack of scruple in escaping or avoiding. evaded the question by changing the subject elude implies a slippery or baffling quality in the person or thing that escapes. what she sees in him eludes me shun often implies an avoiding as a matter of habitual practice or policy and may imply repugnance or abhorrence. you have shunned your responsibilities eschew implies an avoiding or abstaining from as unwise or distasteful. a playwright who eschews melodrama

Examples of elude in a Sentence

The killer was able to elude the police. The killer has eluded capture. The cause of the disease continues to elude researchers.
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Recent Examples on the Web He was convicted of speeding to elude arrest in 2003 but wasn’t imprisoned in North Carolina as a result of any violent offenses, according to the records. Valerie Bauerlein, WSJ, "Video of Andrew Brown Shooting to Be Released Publicly in 30-Plus Days," 28 Apr. 2021 The mental part of the game didn’t elude Luke Walton, who played 10 years in the NBA and is now the head coach of the Sacramento Kings. John Maffei, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Francis Parker basketball coach Jim Tomey joins 500-win club," 22 Apr. 2021 This was a goal that the 1971-72 Lakers achieved against the New York Knicks (whose roster included Jackson) but which in 2016 would elude the Warriors (coached by Steve Kerr, a member of the record-breaking Bulls). Phil Rosenthal, chicagotribune.com, "Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls capped a 72-win regular season 25 years ago today. And that’s just the start of notable anniversaries for the 1995-96 team.," 21 Apr. 2021 On July 21, Dupuch, the commandant, growing impatient with Roget’s efforts to elude captivity, demanded that Roget present Genevese papers by 7 a.m. the next day; otherwise, Roget would join his fellow countrymen who were being readied for Verdun. Claudia Kalb, Smithsonian Magazine, "Before He Wrote a Thesaurus, Roget Had to Escape Napoleon’s Dragnet," 21 Apr. 2021 These five existential physics puzzles still elude explanation. Ethan Siegel, Forbes, "5 Puzzles About The Universe That Keep Scientists Up At Night," 19 Apr. 2021 Bryce Young made a juke move to elude a rushing defender, set his feet and launched a quick pass for a big gain to tailback Roydell Williams on the opening drive. John Zenor, ajc, "QB front-runner Young mostly shines in Alabama's spring game," 17 Apr. 2021 Drawing on a distinguished scholarly career spent immersed in the popular culture of pre–Civil War America, Reynolds, a professor at the CUNY Graduate Center, illuminates aspects of Lincoln’s significance that elude more conventional biographers. Sean Wilentz, The New York Review of Books, "Lincoln’s Rowdy America," 13 Apr. 2021 At that time, two of the occupants tried to elude police. John Benson, cleveland, "Thieves attempt to flee after crashing stolen Ford: Parma Police Blotter," 24 Mar. 2021

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

1667, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for elude

Latin eludere, from e- + ludere to play — more at ludicrous

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Statistics for elude

Last Updated

5 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Elude.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elude. Accessed 9 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for elude



English Language Learners Definition of elude

: to avoid or escape (someone or something) by being quick, skillful, or clever
: to fail to be understood or remembered by (someone)
: to fail to be achieved by (someone)


\ i-ˈlüd How to pronounce elude (audio) \
eluded; eluding

Kids Definition of elude

: to avoid or escape by being quick, skillful, or tricky

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More from Merriam-Webster on elude

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for elude

Nglish: Translation of elude for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of elude for Arabic Speakers

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