[ ih-lip-sis ]
See synonyms for: ellipsisellipses on Thesaurus.com

noun,plural el·lip·ses [ih-lip-seez]. /ɪˈlɪp siz/.
  1. Grammar.

    • the omission from a sentence or other construction of one or more words that would complete or clarify the construction, as the omission of who are, while I am, or while we are from I like to interview people sitting down.

    • the omission of one or more items from a construction in order to avoid repeating the identical or equivalent items that are in a preceding or following construction, as the omission of been to Paris from the second clause of I've been to Paris, but they haven't.

  2. Printing. a mark or marks as ——, …, or * * *, to indicate an omission or suppression of letters or words.

Origin of ellipsis

First recorded in 1560–70; from Latin ellīpsis, from Greek élleipsis “omission,” from el- (variant of en- en-2) + leip-, stem of leípein “to leave” + -sis -sis

Words Nearby ellipsis

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How to use ellipsis in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for ellipsis


/ (ɪˈlɪpsɪs) /

nounplural -ses (-siːz)
  1. Also called: eclipsis omission of parts of a word or sentence

  2. printing a sequence of three dots (…) indicating an omission in text

Origin of ellipsis

C16: from Latin, from Greek elleipsis omission, from elleipein to leave out, from leipein to leave

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

Cultural definitions for ellipsis


[ (i-lip-sis) ]

A punctuation mark (...) used most often within quotations to indicate that something has been left out. For example, if we leave out parts of the above definition, it can read: “A punctuation mark (...) used most often ... to indicate....”

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