Synonym Chooser

How does the verb elucidate contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of elucidate are explain, explicate, expound, and interpret. While all these words mean "to make something clear or understandable," elucidate stresses the throwing of light upon as by offering details or motives previously unclear or only implicit.

elucidate an obscure passage

In what contexts can explain take the place of elucidate?

While the synonyms explain and elucidate are close in meaning, explain implies a making plain or intelligible what is not immediately obvious or entirely known.

explain the rules

When might explicate be a better fit than elucidate?

The meanings of explicate and elucidate largely overlap; however, explicate adds the idea of a developed or detailed analysis.

explicate a poem

When would expound be a good substitute for elucidate?

The words expound and elucidate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, expound implies a careful often elaborate explanation.

expounding a scientific theory

How are the words interpret and explain related as synonyms of elucidate?

Interpret adds to explain the need for imagination or sympathy or special knowledge in dealing with something.

interpreting a work of art


Thesaurus Entries Near elucidate

Cite this Entry

“Elucidate.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jun. 2024.

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