- something that illustrates, as a picture in a book or magazine.
- a comparison or an example intended for explanation or corroboration.
- the act or process of illuminating.
- the act of clarifying or explaining; elucidation.
- Archaic. illustriousness; distinction.
Origin of illustration
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for illustration
It also offers an illustration about vaccine safety in general.The $1 Billion Reason to Vaccinate
June 12, 2014
Now, its fantastic rooms house the first national museum focused solely on the art of American illustration.
His illustration Daybreak was once the most reproduced work of art in the world.
Insist that it's as clear an illustration of rape as you're going to see on cable TV—because it is.Why We Should Pretend the ‘Game of Thrones’ Rape Scene Never Happened
May 4, 2014
The picture was never actually published, but an illustration based on the picture was.Brooks Cleared of Prince William Photo Charge
February 20, 2014
He had for years been writing of family and social duties; here was his illustration!Weighed and Wanting
And this illustration has significance for more than the physical order of revelation.
Let us look at the opening chapters of Genesis for illustration.
A glance at the illustration will make this plain, and also show how the wires are to be placed.Flying Machines
W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
Not from the marvellous, my friends; let us seek an illustration from the ordinary.The Gentleman From Indiana
- pictorial matter used to explain or decorate a text
- an example or demonstrationan illustration of his ability
- the act of illustrating or the state of being illustrated
Word Origin and History for illustration
c.1400, "a shining;" early 15c., "a manifestation;" mid-15c., "a spiritual illumination," from Old French illustration "apparition, appearance," and directly from Latin illustrationem (nominative illustratio) "vivid representation" (in writing), literally "an enlightening," from past participle stem of illustrare "light up, make light, illuminate;" figuratively "make clear, disclose, explain; adorn, render distinguished," from assimilated form of in- "in" (see in- (2)) + lustrare "make bright, illuminate," related to lucere "shine," lux "light" (see light (n.)). Mental sense of "act of making clear in the mind" is from 1580s. Meaning "an illustrative picture" is from 1816.