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elite Syllabification: e·lite
Pronunciation: /əˈlēt/
/āˈlēt/

Definition of elite in English:

noun

1A select part of a group that is superior to the rest in terms of ability or qualities: the elite of Britain’s armed forces [as modifier]: elite colleges and universities an elite athlete
More example sentences
  • In fact, Murray comments that societal elites were less likely to be religious.
  • It is a model strictly for people who are into hierarchical societies with bossy elites who like to display their power.
  • Town life also presented new challenges of economic and social organization to urban elites.
Synonyms
best, pick, cream, crème de la crème, flower, nonpareil, elect;
high society, jet set, beautiful people, beau monde, haut monde, glitterati;
aristocracy, nobility, upper class
1.1A group or class of people seen as having the greatest power and influence within a society, especially because of their wealth or privilege: the country’s governing elite the silent majority were looked down upon by the liberal elite
More example sentences
  • In recent decades, successive governments have carried out policies aimed at benefiting a tiny privileged elite at the expense of the broad mass of working people.
  • Unless you're a CEO or a millionaire I don't see how you can defend a party whose policy benefits benefits the elite over the general populace.
  • Over the past decade, the Western political elite has experienced a profound disorientation.
2A size of letter in typewriting, with 12 characters to the inch (about 4.7 to the centimeter).

Origin

Late 18th century: from French élite 'selection, choice', from élire 'to elect', from a variant of Latin eligere (see elect). sense 2 dates from the early 20th century.

More
  • elegant from Late Middle English:

    These days, someone elegant will generally be well dressed, but the basic idea behind the word is of being discerning and making careful choices. It comes from Old French élégant or Latin elegans, from eligere ‘to choose or select’, which was the origin of elect (Late Middle English), eligible (Late Middle English), and elite (late 18th century).

Definition of elite in:

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