Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[ih-lohp] /ɪˈloʊp/
verb (used without object), eloped, eloping.
to run off secretly to be married, usually without the consent or knowledge of one's parents.
to run away with a lover.
to leave without permission or notification; escape:
At age 21, the apprentice eloped from his master.
(of a person with a mental disorder or cognitive impairment) to leave or run away from a safe area or safe premises.
Origin of elope
1590-1600; Middle English *alopen to run away (whence Anglo-French aloper). See a-3, lope
Related forms
elopement, noun
eloper, noun
nonelopement, noun
uneloped, adjective
uneloping, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for elope
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Grainne put geasa upon Diarmaid to elope with her, and these he could not break.

  • You promised Countess Rostova to marry her and were about to elope with her, is that so?

    War and Peace Leo Tolstoy
  • I have a great mind to elope to Constantinople, and never see any one any more!

  • Goujet was an odd fellow, proposing to elope, just the way it happens in novels.

    L'Assommoir Emile Zola
  • They elope, take ship, and are separated by a series of mishaps upon the open sea.

  • "Perhaps she will elope," the doctor said to his wife, humorously.

    The Man Who Wins Robert Herrick
  • To elope from a hospitable roof, with a married lady, accompanied by her maid, might be an act not without precedent.

    The Disentanglers Andrew Lang
British Dictionary definitions for elope


(intransitive) to run away secretly with a lover, esp in order to marry
Derived Forms
elopement, noun
eloper, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Anglo-French aloper, perhaps from Middle Dutch lōpen to run; see lope
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 elope

1590s, "to run off," probably a reborrowing from Middle Dutch (ont)lopen "run away." Sense of "run from parents to marry secretly" is 19c. Anglo-French aloper "run away from a husband with one's lover" is attested from mid-14c., but there is a gap of many years.

The Anglo-French word represents Old French es- + Middle English lepen "run, leap" (see leap (v.)).

The oldest Germanic word for "wedding" is represented by Old English brydlop (cf. Old High German bruthlauft, Old Norse bruðhlaup), literally "bride run," the conducting of the woman to her new home. Related: Eloped; eloping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for elope

Many English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for elope

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for elope