Definition of explain
1a : to make known explain the secret of your successb : to make plain or understandable footnotes that explain the terms
2 : to give the reason for or cause of unable to explain his strange conduct
3 : to show the logical development or relationships of explained the new theory
: to make something plain or understandable a report that suggests rather than explains
explainableplay \ik-ˈsplā-nə-bəl\ adjective
: to clarify one's statements or the reasons for one's conduct
Examples of explain in a Sentence
I need a lawyer to explain this contract to me.
The professor explained the poem to the class.
She explained how the machine worked.
I explained to them that I would be available by phone.
Scientists could not explain the strange lights in the sky.
I don't know how to explain the dog's strange behavior.
We asked him to explain his reasons to us.
Can you explain why no one was informed earlier?
That explains why we were so far behind schedule.
Give me a chance to explain.
Recent Examples of explain from the Web
That naturally brings beer to mind and Fort Worth’s Wild Acre Brewing Co. will explain the art of craft beer and have samples on hand.
The owner and the President Why Gilbert would scrimp on his top executive's salary might be the explained by his appearance at the White House for the Chicago Cubs' championship celebration with President Donald Trump.
Yet midsized animals are the fastest on Earth, a trend that researchers have long struggled to explain.
International law prohibits any kind of quota, Kopp explained.
Ballard's 14-year-old son, Ashur, is transgender, and Ballard paid a visit to his state legislature to share Ashur's story and explain the necessity of trans-inclusive legislation.
The best way to prevent skin from overproducing oil, explains Erica Suppa—
As with the F-Pace, company officials used a lot of words explaining how this size-smaller crossover has been influenced by the F-type sports car.
Explaining my phobia encouraged people to tell me about their own worst snake experiences, which sent me into a tailspin.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'explain.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Synonym Discussion of explain
EXPLAIN Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of explain for English Language Learners
: to make (something) clear or easy to understand
: to tell, show, or be the reason for or cause of something
EXPLAIN Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up explain? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).