or é·lite

[ ih-leet, ey-leet ]
See synonyms for: eliteelites on Thesaurus.com

  1. (used with a plural verb) the choicest or best of anything considered collectively, especially of a group or class of people: The elite of the contemporary art scene were all represented at the gallery.

  2. (used with a plural verb)

    • people of the highest financial or social level of society: Only the elite received invites to the event.

    • a group of people exercising the major share of authority or influence within a larger group: The scandal involved most members of the political party's power elite.

  1. a member of a group of people who have a great deal of power, influence, or social capital: The elites don't care about ordinary people's problems.

  2. a type, widely used in typewriters, that is approximately 10-point in size and has 12 characters to the inch.: Compare pica1.

  1. representing the choicest or most select; best: The program is taught by an elite group of authors.

Origin of elite

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English elit “a person elected to office,” from Middle French e(s)lit, past participle of e(s)lire “to choose”; see elect

Other words from elite

  • an·ti·e·lite, noun, adjective
  • non·e·lite, noun
  • su·per·e·lite, noun

Words Nearby elite

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use elite in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for elite



/ (ɪˈliːt, eɪ-) /

  1. (sometimes functioning as plural) the most powerful, rich, gifted, or educated members of a group, community, etc

  2. Also called: twelve pitch a typewriter typesize having 12 characters to the inch

  1. of, relating to, or suitable for an elite; exclusive

Origin of elite

C18: from French, from Old French eslit chosen, from eslire to choose, from Latin ēligere to elect

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