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paraphrase

[par-uh-freyz] /ˈpær əˌfreɪz/
noun
1.
a restatement of a text or passage giving the meaning in another form, as for clearness; rewording.
2.
the act or process of restating or rewording.
verb (used with object), paraphrased, paraphrasing.
3.
to render the meaning of in a paraphrase:
to paraphrase a technical paper for lay readers.
verb (used without object), paraphrased, paraphrasing.
4.
to make a paraphrase or paraphrases.
Origin of paraphrase
1540-1550
1540-50; < Middle French < Latin paraphrasis < Greek paráphrasis. See para-1, phrase
Related forms
paraphrasable, adjective
paraphraser, noun
misparaphrase, verb, misparaphrased, misparaphrasing.
unparaphrased, adjective
Synonyms
1. See translation. 3. summarize; explain.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for paraphrase
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It was really only a paraphrase of the old story of the grub and the butterfly.

    The Fortune Hunter Louis Joseph Vance
  • The paraphrase which has just been given of it goes beyond the actual words of Plato.

    The Republic Plato
  • “She is so nervous,” Maria said loyally, but her paraphrase availed nothing.

    Olive in Italy Moray Dalton
  • "It was a paraphrase," he answered, the smile still upon his face.

    St. Cuthbert's Robert E. Knowles
  • He is not disturbed by the diversity of methods exhibited in the paraphrase.

British Dictionary definitions for paraphrase

paraphrase

/ˈpærəˌfreɪz/
noun
1.
an expression of a statement or text in other words, esp in order to clarify
2.
the practice of making paraphrases
verb
3.
to put (something) into other words; restate (something)
Derived Forms
paraphrastic (ˌpærəˈfræstɪk) adjective
Word Origin
C16: via French from Latin paraphrasis, from Greek, from paraphrazein to recount
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 paraphrase
n.

1540s, from Middle French paraphrase (1520s), from Latin paraphrasis "a paraphrase," from Greek paraphrasis "a free rendering," from paraphrazein "to tell in other words," from para- "beside" (see para- (1)) + phrazein "to tell" (see phrase (n.)).

v.

c.1600, from paraphrase (n.) or from French paraphraser. Related: Paraphrased; paraphrasing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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paraphrase in Culture

paraphrase definition


A restatement of speech or writing that retains the basic meaning while changing the words. A paraphrase often clarifies the original statement by putting it into words that are more easily understood.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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