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'splain

or splain

[ spleyn ]
/ spleɪn /
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verb (used with or without object) Informal.
a shortened form of explain.
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Origin of 'splain

By shortening and alteration of explain

Other definitions for 'splain (2 of 2)

-splain

a combining form extracted from mansplain and meaning “to explain or comment on something in a condescending, overconfident, and often inaccurate or oversimplified manner, from the perspective of the group one identifies with,” as in ladysplain; whitesplain:racism being whitesplained to a person of color.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

WORDS THAT USE -SPLAIN

What does -splain mean?

The combining formsplain is used like a suffix meaning “to explain or comment on something in a condescending or overconfident manner.” It is occasionally used in slang terms. In most instances, the first element of the word describes the perspective of the “explainer,” e.g., mansplain.

The form –splain comes from the word mansplain, meaning “to explain something to a woman in a condescending, overconfident, and often inaccurate or oversimplified manner, typically to a woman already knowledgeable about the topic.” The form –splain in this sense is extracted from explain.

Examples of -splain

An example of a word that features –splain is whitesplain, “to comment on the minority experience or explain racism to a person of color in a condescending or blaming way.”

The white part of the word here refers to white people. As we have seen, –splain means “to explain in a condescending manner.” Whitesplain literally means “white people explaining [racism] in a condescending manner.”

What are some words that use the combining form –splain?

  • Blacksplain
  • gaysplain
  • Jewsplain
  • ladysplain
  • richsplain
  • womansplain

What are some other forms that –splain may be commonly confused with?

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Given the meaning of –splain, what does richsplain mean?

How to use 'splain in a sentence

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