Definition of elliptical in English:

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Pronunciation: /iˈliptik(ə)l/


1(Of speech or writing) using or involving ellipsis, especially so as to be difficult to understand: an elliptical lyrical style
More example sentences
  • At times, elliptical speech or writing is so concise that listeners and readers must supply missing elements through guesswork or special knowledge, and if they cannot, they fail to understand.
  • In each case, elliptical writing conveys too little.
  • I know about than the preposition vs. than the introducer of elliptical clauses, but this example took me (intuitively, not analytically) aback.
cryptic, abstruse, ambiguous, obscure, oblique, Delphic;
terse, concise, succinct, compact, economic, laconic, sparing, abridged
2 another term for elliptic.
Example sentences
  • Its elliptical paraboloid shape was selected because it could be easily described mathematically, simplifying both design and construction.
  • He guessed that the original cutting stylus was defective and so he tried a custom-made reproducing stylus, instead of the usual conical or elliptical styli.
  • The north face of the building is concave, completing the elliptical pattern that begins in the courtyard.



Pronunciation: /əˈliptik(ə)lē/
Example sentences
  • As he moved from protest singer to surrealistic prophet, from born-again Christian to born-again Jew, Dylan's life and music registered, however unwillingly or elliptically, his times.
  • I've been interviewing various players in this little drama for some time now - something I've alluded to elliptically in a few posts over the last couple months.
  • By combining a weak horizontal magnetic field with a strong vertical magnetic field, we can extract light that is elliptically polarized.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: el·lip·ti·cal

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