Definition of elicit in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɪˈlɪsɪt/

verb (elicits, eliciting, elicited)

[with object]
1Evoke or draw out (a reaction, answer, or fact) from someone: I tried to elicit a smile from Joanna the work elicited enormous public interest
More example sentences
  • They say they are interested in eliciting strong reactions to their work but, as people, the deepest emotion they seem willing to display is this kind of bland amusement.
  • If some students disagree with an incorrect answer, elicit the correct response.
  • Prolonged question and answer sessions will eventually elicit the response the teacher is looking for.
extort, exact, wrest, derive, provoke, wring, screw, squeeze
informal worm out
1.1 archaic Draw forth (something that is latent or potential) into existence: a corrupt heart elicits in an hour all that is bad in us
More example sentences
  • However, the extension to minority groups elicits the potential for internal (cultural or economic) autonomy.
  • But eliciting the yet-unrealized potentials of an ecosystem is one thing; firing silver bullets at it is quite another.
  • Action potentials are elicited when tiny pores in the nerve cell membrane, known as sodium channels, open up in response to a stimulus.



Pronunciation: /ɪlɪsɪˈteɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • The elicitation of such norms of behaviour is likely to have considerable overlap with questions about attitudes and beliefs, since norms and values can be construed as having elements of both.
  • Development of ‘yes’ and ‘no’ finger signals, independent of conscious volition, can occur quickly and allows for the elicitation of deeper, less conscious responses.
  • It seems that the elicitation of responses under these conditions is mediated by an alleviation of the effects of negative attentional processing (reflected in distracting worries or negative thoughts).


Example sentences
  • An increase of two signal molecules, generated by the host cell, is typically induced by the invading pathogen or by elicitors (oxidative and nitrosative burst, respectively).
  • SA-treatment inhibits wound- and JA-induced responses in the same plant, and application of JA partially reduced the efficacy of chemical ISR elicitors.
  • Plasma membrane-bound NAD H oxidases are widely accepted as responsible for reactive oxygen species production in the regulation of defence strategies upon infection with pathogens or stimulation by elicitors.


Mid 17th century: from Latin elicit- 'drawn out by trickery or magic', from the verb elicere, from e- (variant of ex-) 'out' + lacere 'entice, deceive'.

Words that rhyme with elicit

complicit, explicit, illicit, implicit, licit, solicit

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: elicit

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