Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[dih-lin-ee-eyt] /dɪˈlɪn iˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), delineated, delineating.
to trace the outline of; sketch or trace in outline; represent pictorially:
He delineated the state of Texas on the map with a red pencil.
to portray in words; describe or outline with precision:
In her speech she delineated the city plan with great care.
Origin of delineate
1550-60; < Latin dēlīneātus, equivalent to dē- de- + līneātus lineate
Related forms
[dih-lin-ee-uh-buh l] /dɪˈlɪn i ə bəl/ (Show IPA),
predelineate, verb (used with object), predelineated, predelineating.
undelineable, adjective
undelineated, adjective
well-delineated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for delineating
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Such is the character of our hunter, and none who have known him as I have, will accuse me of delineating from fancy.

  • Out of Cruikshank's caricature he comes to us with a tail capable of delineating a whole alphabet of humour.

    George Cruikshank W. H. Chesson
  • The act of delineating the various lines of a ship to the full size on the mould-loft floor, from the draught given.

    The Sailor's Word-Book William Henry Smyth
  • Shpajinsky quite understands my requirements, and will carry out my intentions in delineating the principal characters.

  • The sober Flaxman had never succeeded in delineating personages so completely stupefied at having been cut out by a punch.

    Very Woman Remy de Gourmont
  • This affords opportunity for delineating many interesting Indian customs on festive celebrations, such as weddings and feast-days.

    Last of the Great Scouts Helen Cody Wetmore
  • Here, as nowhere else, has Prescott succeeded in delineating character.

    William Hickling Prescott Harry Thurston Peck
  • With this exception, you will not look for much of Shakspeare's skill in delineating character.

British Dictionary definitions for delineating


verb (transitive)
to trace the shape or outline of; sketch
to represent pictorially, as by making a chart or diagram; depict
to portray in words, esp with detail and precision; describe
Derived Forms
delineable, adjective
delineation, noun
delineative, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin dēlīneāre to sketch out, from līnealine1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for delineating



1550s, from Latin delineatus, past participle of delineare "to sketch out," from de- "completely" (see de-) + lineare "draw lines," from linea "line" (see line (n.)). Related: Delineated; delineating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for delineate

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for delineating

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for delineating