verb re·veal \ ri-ˈvēl \
|Updated on: 5 Jul 2018

Definition of reveal

revealed; revealing; reveals
1 : to make known through divine inspiration
2 : to make (something secret or hidden) publicly or generally known
  • reveal a secret
3 : to open up to view : display
  • the uncurtained window revealed a cluttered room


play \ri-ˈvē-lə-bəl\ adjective



Examples of reveal in a Sentence

  1. She would not reveal the secret.

  2. The test revealed the true cause of death.

  3. It was revealed that they stole over million.

  4. They revealed the plans for the new building.

  5. The expression on his face revealed how he felt.

  6. The curtain was lifted to reveal the grand prize.

  7. Pulling up the carpeting revealed the home's beautiful hardwood floors.

Recent Examples of reveal from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of reveal

Middle English revelen, from Anglo-French reveler, from Latin revelare to uncover, reveal, from re- + velare to cover, veil, from velum veil

Synonym Discussion of reveal

reveal, disclose, divulge, tell, betray mean to make known what has been or should be concealed. reveal may apply to supernatural or inspired revelation of truths beyond the range of ordinary human vision or reason.
    • divine will as revealed in sacred writings
disclose may imply a discovering but more often an imparting of information previously kept secret.
    • candidates must disclose their financial assets
divulge implies a disclosure involving some impropriety or breach of confidence.
    • refused to divulge an anonymous source
tell implies an imparting of necessary or useful information.
    • told them what he had overheard
betray implies a divulging that represents a breach of faith or an involuntary or unconscious disclosure.
    • a blush that betrayed her embarrassment




Definition of reveal

plural reveals
: the act or an instance of showing, revealing, or disclosing something (such as surprising information or a new product) for the first time
  • Last year, in the fall and holiday after the reveal of the iPhone 7, Apple sold 78.29 million phones.
  • —Eric Limer
  • … it's tough to discuss the final volume of the series without acknowledging some of the big reveals of its predecessors.
  • —David Kamp
  • The big end reveal isn't just a shock; it's deeply upsetting, an emotional gut-punch.
  • —Matt Prigge
  • That fact will eventually become evident, no doubt … . That is the art of the slow reveal.
  • —Peter J. Boyer

First Known Use of reveal


in the meaning defined above

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Definition of reveal

: the side of an opening (as for a window) between a frame and the outer surface of a wall; also : jamb

Origin and Etymology of reveal

alteration of earlier revale, probably ultimately from Middle French ravaler to reduce the depth of (masonry or wood), literally, to take back down, from Old French, from re- + avaler to let fall — more at vail

REVEAL Defined for Kids


verb re·veal \ ri-ˈvēl \

Definition of reveal for Students

revealed; revealing
1 : to make known
  • “Secrecy about what?” “That I cannot reveal.”
  • —Robert C. O'Brien, Rats of NIMH
2 : to show clearly
  • The opened door revealed a messy room.

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a simultaneous discharge of guns

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