ex·​plore | \ ik-ˈsplȯr How to pronounce explore (audio) \
explored; exploring

Definition of explore

transitive verb

1a : to investigate, study, or analyze : look into explore the relationship between social class and learning ability sometimes used with indirect questionsto explore where ethical issues arise— R. T. Blackburn
b : to become familiar with by testing or experimenting explore new cuisines
2 : to travel over (new territory) for adventure or discovery
3 : to examine especially for diagnostic purposes explore the wound

intransitive verb

: to make or conduct a systematic search explore for oil

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Examples of explore in a Sentence

Researchers are exploring how language is acquired by children. The book explores a number of controversial issues. You need to explore your feelings on this subject more carefully. an opportunity to explore different activities The children were encouraged to explore mathematics. I decided to go out and explore the town. They were sent to explore unknown regions of Africa.
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Recent Examples on the Web Decades ahead of the Great Migration of the World War I era, the conference established a committee to explore conditions for a mass exodus to the western and northern United States. Christopher Frear, Smithsonian Magazine, "Meet Joseph Rainey, the First Black Congressman," 5 Jan. 2021 Unfamiliarity with avalanche safety combined with eagerness to explore can add up to a potentially troubling equation, especially where people are concentrated in a few prime spots and may not be familiar with recognizing avalanche terrain. Zaz Hollander, Anchorage Daily News, "As pandemic-cooped crowds hit Alaska’s backcountry, concerns grow about avalanche danger for all users," 3 Jan. 2021 While Heather saw her trip as a path to explore the world, Heidi immediately fell in love with Germany. Holly Bailey, Washington Post, "‘I said goodbye to my sister through a computer screen’," 2 Jan. 2021 For most outdoor lovers, the additions simply mean further opportunities to explore the diverse natural wonders of Cleveland Metroparks. Chris M. Worrell, cleveland, "Cleveland Metroparks adds 52 acres to West Creek Reservation," 31 Dec. 2020 With the mansion itself closed to the public, the Blithewold estate turned its attention outward this season, illuminating more of its quiet gardens, groves and pathways and offering opportunities to explore. Amanda Milkovits, BostonGlobe.com, "Blithewold Mansion brings holiday magic outdoors," 31 Dec. 2020 The tricky landing gave us the chance to explore just how pilots get their aircraft safely on the ground in powerful crosswinds in the first place. Rob Verger, Popular Science, "These fascinating flying stories soared above a turbulent year," 28 Dec. 2020 Harvard’s liberal-arts curriculum presented me with the freedom to explore my interests, which led me to discover my passion for the social sciences. Tarun Timalsina, WSJ, "My Unlikely Path from a Valley in Nepal to the Halls of Harvard," 24 Dec. 2020 Despite their long history of success, hospital leaders wanted to explore new ways to improve patient safety and decrease medical errors. Josh Linkner, Detroit Free Press, "What an Italian pit crew taught hospital leaders about safety," 19 Dec. 2020

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

1531, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for explore

Latin explorare, from ex- + plorare to cry out

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Learn More about explore

Time Traveler for explore

Time Traveler

The first known use of explore was in 1531

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Statistics for explore

Last Updated

16 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Explore.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/explore. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for explore


How to pronounce explore (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of explore

: to look at (something) in a careful way to learn more about it : to study or analyze (something)
: to talk or think about (something) in a thoughtful and detailed way
: to learn about (something) by trying it


ex·​plore | \ ik-ˈsplȯr How to pronounce explore (audio) \
explored; exploring

Kids Definition of explore

1 : to search through or into : study closely Doctors explored the spread of the disease.
2 : to go into or through for purposes of discovery or adventure explore a cave

Other Words from explore

explorer \ ik-​ˈsplȯr-​ər \ noun
ex·​plore | \ ik-ˈsplō(ə)r, -ˈsplȯ(ə)r How to pronounce explore (audio) \
explored; exploring

Medical Definition of explore

: to examine (as by surgery) especially for diagnostic purposes the abdomen may need to be explored surgically— Donald Caslow

Other Words from explore

exploration \ ˌek-​splə-​ˈrā-​shən How to pronounce explore (audio) \ noun

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