exaggerate

verb
ex·​ag·​ger·​ate | \ ig-ˈza-jə-ˌrāt How to pronounce exaggerate (audio) \
exaggerated; exaggerating

Definition of exaggerate

transitive verb

1 : to enlarge beyond bounds or the truth : overstate a friend exaggerates a man's virtues— Joseph Addison
2 : to enlarge or increase especially beyond the normal : overemphasize

intransitive verb

: to make an overstatement

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Other Words from exaggerate

exaggerative \ ig-​ˈza-​jə-​ˌrā-​tiv How to pronounce exaggerative (audio) , -​ˈzaj-​rə-​tiv , -​ˈza-​jə-​rə-​tiv \ adjective
exaggerator \ ig-​ˈza-​jə-​ˌrā-​tər How to pronounce exaggerator (audio) \ noun
exaggeratory \ ig-​ˈzaj-​rə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce exaggeratory (audio) , -​ˈza-​jə-​ \ adjective

Examples of exaggerate in a Sentence

The book exaggerates the difficulties he faced in starting his career. It's impossible to exaggerate the importance of this discovery. He tends to exaggerate when talking about his accomplishments. He exaggerated his movements so we could see them more clearly.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Your teenage years can be a rollercoaster of emotions and that's without exaggerating. Jasmine Gomez, Seventeen, "15 Facts About Teen Pregnancy You Need to Know," 21 Aug. 2019 The departure led President Donald Trump to nominate Rep. John Ratcliffe, who withdrew after Democrats and some Republicans raised questions about whether the Texas congressman exaggerated his work as a federal prosecutor of terrorism cases. Editors, USA TODAY, "Woodstock 50th anniversary, Philadelphia shooting, Dominican Republic resort closes: 5 things to know Thursday," 15 Aug. 2019 Mainstream pop culture has a history of shunning thick black women: Missy was out here exaggerating her figure in her introduction to most of the world. Brian Josephs, Billboard, "Every Missy Elliott Music Video, Ranked," 14 Aug. 2019 But interviews and documents show the company has often exaggerated its tools’ abilities and has kept outside experts from reviewing its methodology. New York Times, "This High-Tech Solution to Disaster Response May Be Too Good to Be True," 9 Aug. 2019 Many commentators wildly exaggerate how fast driverless cars will put taxis out of business, or that doctors will be replaced by AI diagnostics. Geoff Mulgan, Quartz at Work, "We need to retrain workers—not rescrew them," 23 July 2019 Pin Lim, 44, who was born and raised in Singapore, plays Bun Foo, a role that is often portrayed by white actors who exaggerate its potential for a cartoonish stereotype. Don Maines, Houston Chronicle, "Asian-American actor helps update Texas City ‘Millie’ show," 10 July 2019 Roby said media coverage tends to exaggerate the level of hostility in Congress. Mike Cason | Mcason@al.com, al, "Martha Roby sheds no new light on decision to retire from Congress," 14 Aug. 2019 The behaviors exaggerate what animals would do in nature, including hunting and roaming over vast territories. Bridget Alex, Discover Magazine, "What Science Says About Why You're Stressed and How to Cope," 21 June 2019

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

1613, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for exaggerate

borrowed from Latin exaggerātus, past participle of exaggerāre "to heap up, construct by piling up, increase in significance," from ex- ex- entry 1 + aggerāre "to heap up over, form into a heap," verbal derivative of agger "rubble, earthwork, rampart, dam," noun derivative of aggerere "to bring, carry (to or up), push close up (against)," from ag- ag- + gerere "to carry, bring" — more at jest entry 1

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Statistics for exaggerate

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exaggerate

The first known use of exaggerate was in 1613

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More Definitions for exaggerate

exaggerate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of exaggerate

: to think of or describe something as larger or greater than it really is
: to make (something) larger or greater than normal

exaggerate

verb
ex·​ag·​ger·​ate | \ ig-ˈza-jə-ˌrāt How to pronounce exaggerate (audio) \
exaggerated; exaggerating

Kids Definition of exaggerate

: to describe as larger or greater than what is true She exaggerated her successes.

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Comments on exaggerate

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