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[ik-spey-shee-eyt] /ɪkˈspeɪ ʃiˌeɪt/
verb (used without object), expatiated, expatiating.
to enlarge in discourse or writing; be copious in description or discussion:
to expatiate upon a theme.
Archaic. to move or wander about intellectually, imaginatively, etc., without restraint.
Origin of expatiate
1530-40; < Latin expatiātus past participle of ex(s)patiārī to wander, digress, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + spatiārī to walk about, derivative of spatium space; see -ate1
Related forms
expatiation, noun
expatiator, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for expatiation
Historical Examples
  • However Andy Hayes was not given to digression or to expatiation.

    Second String Anthony Hope
  • His field is illimitable; his expatiation in it is practically untrammelled.

    Matthew Arnold George Saintsbury
  • His brother-in-law paused in the middle of an expatiation on the business opportunities of the neighborhood.

    Martin Eden Jack London
  • Gower Woodseer's engagement with the girl Madge was a happier subject for expatiation and agreement.

  • For example, the card called Fortitude is an opportunity for expatiation on will as the secret of strength.

  • The faculty of expatiation is the possession of transcendent supremacy even when such organs are not employed.

    The Sarva-Darsana-Samgraha Madhava Acharya
  • A tempting subject for expatiation, especially when one remembers—and who that has once read it can forget?

    Sir Walter Scott William Paton Ker
British Dictionary definitions for expatiation


verb (intransitive)
foll by on or upon. to enlarge (on a theme, topic, etc) at length or in detail; elaborate (on)
(rare) to wander about
Derived Forms
expatiation, noun
expatiator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin exspatiārī to digress, from spatiārī to walk about
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 expatiation



1530s, "walk about, roam freely," from Latin expatiatus/exspatiatus, past participle of expatiari/exspatiari "wander, digress," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + spatiari "to walk, spread out," from spatium (see space). Meaning "talk or write at length" is 1610s. Related: Expatiated; expatiating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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