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[ih-laps] /ɪˈlæps/
verb (used without object), elapsed, elapsing.
(of time) to slip or pass by:
Thirty minutes elapsed before the performance began.
the passage or termination of a period of time; lapse.
Origin of elapse
1635-45; < Latin ēlapsus (past participle of ēlābī to slip away), equivalent to e- e-1 + lab- slip + -sus for -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
unelapsed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for elapsed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The week elapsed, and at the end of it, I had not presented myself at his residence.

  • A little more than a year had elapsed when he again entered the political arena.

    The Grand Old Man Richard B. Cook
  • Uneasily, he had remained in the library until the allotted time was elapsed.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • When, however, suitable time had elapsed, the oldest of the party spoke.

    The Last of the Mohicans James Fenimore Cooper
  • Some hours elapsed before he was conscious of anything that was passing around him.

    Georgie's Present Miss Brightwell
British Dictionary definitions for elapsed


(intransitive) (of time) to pass by
Word Origin
C17: from Latin ēlābī to slip away, from lābī to slip, glide
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
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Word Origin and History for elapsed



1640s, from Middle French elapser, from Latin elapsus, past participle of elabi "slip or glide away, escape," from ex- "out, away" (see ex-) + labi "to slip, glide" (see lapse (n.)). The noun now corresponding to elapse is lapse. Related: Elapsed; elapsing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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