expand

verb
ex·​pand | \ ik-ˈspand How to pronounce expand (audio) \
expanded; expanding; expands

Definition of expand

transitive verb

1 : to open up : unfold
2 : to increase the extent, number, volume, or scope of : enlarge
3a : to express at length or in greater detail
b : to write out in full expand all abbreviations
c : to subject to mathematical expansion expand a function in a power series

intransitive verb

1 : to open out : spread
2 : to increase in extent, number, volume, or scope
3 : to speak or write fully or in detail expanded on the theme
4 : to feel generous or optimistic

Other Words from expand

expandability \ ik-​ˌspan-​də-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce expand (audio) \ noun
expandable \ ik-​ˈspan-​də-​bəl How to pronounce expand (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for expand

expand, amplify, swell, distend, inflate, dilate mean to increase in size or volume. expand may apply regardless of the manner of increase (such as growth, unfolding, addition of parts). a business that expands every year amplify implies the extension or enlargement of something inadequate. amplify the statement with details swell implies gradual expansion beyond a thing's original or normal limits. the bureaucracy swelled to unmanageable proportions distend implies outward extension caused by pressure from within. a distended abdomen inflate implies expanding by introduction of air or something insubstantial and suggests a vulnerability to sudden collapse. an inflated ego dilate applies especially to expansion of circumference. dilated pupils

Examples of expand in a Sentence

The liquid expands and contracts with changes in temperature. His business has expanded to serve the entire state. The coffee shop may expand into a full restaurant. He has expanded his business to serve the entire state. There are plans to expand the airport. The police have decided to expand their investigation. She plans to expand the lecture series into a book. Expand the abbreviation “deg.” to “degree.”
See More
Recent Examples on the Web Take-Two Interactive Software will dramatically expand its mobile division with the acquisition of Zynga in a cash and stock deal valued at $12.7 billion. Chris Morris, Fortune, 10 Jan. 2022 Before acquiring Zynga, Take-Two’s portfolio has been predominantly console- and PC-based, but the deal will expand the business with multiple mobile gaming successes. Washington Post, 10 Jan. 2022 Showing that a fish has the cognitive capability to navigate outside its natural environment of water can expand scientific knowledge of animals' essential navigation skills. Reuters, CNN, 10 Jan. 2022 The union wants to expand COVID testing districtwide, requiring tests unless families opt out with the goal of randomly testing at least 10% of the student and staff population weekly. Sophia Tareen, ajc, 10 Jan. 2022 President Biden last month outlined plans to expand Covid-19 testing sites, and distribute a half-billion free at-home test kits to slow the Omicron surge. Bertrand Benoit, WSJ, 10 Jan. 2022 Under the new law, the city will expand its services to pick up food and yard waste from all 285,000 of its residential accounts, officials said. San Diego Union-Tribune, 9 Jan. 2022 The Treat and Reduce Obesity Act would expand that to include dieticians, mental health professionals, and other health care professionals who can safely guide individuals through this therapy. Fatima Cody Stanford And Kelly Copes-anderson, STAT, 9 Jan. 2022 The governor and the legislature did expand municipal aid by about half that amount in the new state budget adopted last June. Keith Phaneuf, courant.com, 8 Jan. 2022

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

See More

First Known Use of expand

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for expand

Middle English expaunden, from Latin expandere, from ex- + pandere to spread — more at fathom

Learn More About expand

Time Traveler for expand

Time Traveler

The first known use of expand was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near expand

exp

expand

expanded

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for expand

Last Updated

13 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Expand.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/expand. Accessed 18 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for expand

expand

verb

English Language Learners Definition of expand

: to increase in size, range, or amount : to become bigger
: to cause (something) to increase in size, range, or amount : to make (something) bigger
: to write (something) in full form

expand

verb
ex·​pand | \ ik-ˈspand How to pronounce expand (audio) \
expanded; expanding

Kids Definition of expand

1 : to grow or increase in size, number, or amount The airport is expanding.
2 : to open wide : unfold The eagle's wings expanded.
3 : to take up or cause to take up more space Metals expand under heat.
4 : to speak or write about in greater detail Would you expand on that idea?

More from Merriam-Webster on expand

Nglish: Translation of expand for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of expand for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!