- to magnify beyond the limits of truth; overstate; represent disproportionately: to exaggerate the difficulties of a situation.
- to increase or enlarge abnormally: Those shoes exaggerate the size of my feet.
- to employ exaggeration, as in speech or writing: a person who is always exaggerating.
Origin of exaggerate
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- to regard or represent as larger or greater, more important or more successful, etc, than is true
- (tr) to make greater, more noticeable, etc, than usualhis new clothes exaggerated his awkwardness
Word Origin and History for over-exaggerate
1530s, "to pile up, accumulate," from Latin exaggeratus, past participle of exaggerare "heighten, amplify, magnify," literally "to heap, pile, load, fill," from ex- "thoroughly" (see ex-) + aggerare "heap up," from agger (genitive aggeris) "heap," from aggerere "bring together, carry toward," from ad- "to, toward" + gerere "carry" (see gest). Sense of "overstate" first recorded in English 1560s. Related: Exaggerated; exaggerating.