en·​cap·​su·​late | \ in-ˈkap-sə-ˌlāt How to pronounce encapsulate (audio) , en- \
encapsulated; encapsulating

Definition of encapsulate

transitive verb

1 : to enclose in or as if in a capsule a pilot encapsulated in the cockpit
2 : epitomize, summarize encapsulate an era in an aphorism

Other Words from encapsulate

encapsulation \ in-​ˌkap-​sə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce encapsulate (audio) , en-​ \ noun

Did you know?

Encapsulate and its related noun, capsule, derive from capsula, a diminutive form of the Latin noun capsa, meaning "box." Capsa also gave us our noun case (the container kind; the legal sense has a different origin). The original sense of encapsulate, meaning "to enclose something in a capsule," first appeared in the late 19th century. Its extended meaning, "to give a summary or synopsis of something," plays on the notion of a capsule as something compact, self-contained, and often easily digestible. There is also a verb capsule, which is more or less synonymous with encapsulate.

Examples of encapsulate in a Sentence

The contaminated material should be encapsulated and removed. can you encapsulate the president's speech in about a paragraph?
Recent Examples on the Web This fact, to Kennedy, seemed to encapsulate everything that was wrong with everything. Los Angeles Times, 25 July 2022 Rich Strike, a champion spawned from the unlikeliest circumstances, seemed to encapsulate out purest notions of what the sport can be. Childs Walker, Baltimore Sun, 15 May 2022 With her head of perfectly imperfect beachy waves, and dressed in a tiered mini-dress, Uggs and embellished belt, Miller seemed to encapsulate the carefree sensibility of festival life. Leah Dolan, CNN, 15 Apr. 2022 Fans took to social media to encapsulate the moment and reflect on the one triumph that succeeded many defeats over the past 31 years. Brooks Sutherland, The Enquirer, 28 Jan. 2022 The spectacle seemed to encapsulate the complexity of the nation’s current COVID moment. Alia E. Dastagir, USA TODAY, 25 Aug. 2021 After all, the error seemed to encapsulate the innocence, intellectual inferiority, and instinctive submissiveness of the peoples they were born to rule. Fara Dabhoiwala, The New York Review of Books, 19 Aug. 2021 Here, music and the text deftly encapsulate the message of the opera, a richly layered tale about a black American extended family and its fraught relationship with land, history and obligation. Heidi Waleson, WSJ, 26 July 2022 GIFs encapsulate emotional reactions, broadening and flattening real feelings and impulses so that others can make use of them. New York Times, 22 July 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'encapsulate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of encapsulate

1872, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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The first known use of encapsulate was in 1872

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Last Updated

12 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Encapsulate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/encapsulate. Accessed 19 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for encapsulate


en·​cap·​su·​late | \ in-ˈkap-sə-ˌlāt How to pronounce encapsulate (audio) \
encapsulated; encapsulating

Medical Definition of encapsulate

transitive verb

: to surround, encase, or protect in or as if in a capsule DNA has been encapsulated in microspheres— Paul Smaglik

intransitive verb

: to become encapsulated a bacillus that encapsulates in the human body

Other Words from encapsulate

encapsulation \ -​ˌkap-​sə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce encapsulate (audio) \ noun


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