Definition of explanation in English:

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Pronunciation: /ɛkspləˈneɪʃ(ə)n/


1A statement or account that makes something clear: the birth rate is central to any explanation of population trends
More example sentences
  • He provides clear explanations of complex economic issues, using anecdotes to illustrate each point.
  • Provide a clear explanation of your aims and methods and be prepared to deal with concerns.
  • The explanations are admirably clear, and the arrangement appears to be a very good one.
clarification, simplification;
description, report, version, statement;
elucidation, exposition, expounding, explication, delineation;
gloss, interpretation, deciphering, decoding, translation, commentary, exegesis;
demonstration, illustration;
resolution, solution
informal the why and wherefore
1.1A reason or justification given for an action or belief: Freud tried to make sex the explanation for everything [mass noun]: my application was rejected without explanation
More example sentences
  • There are no excuses or reasonable explanations for the way that this information was managed initially.
  • People are just finding reasons and other explanations for the market downturn.
  • I suspect that there's no one reason and that the explanation varies from person to person.
account, reason;
justification, excuse, alibi, apologia, rationalization, rationale;
defence, vindication, mitigation
rare extenuation


Late Middle English: from Latin explanatio(n-), from the verb explanare (see explain).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ex¦plan|ation

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