verb (used without object), ex·pa·ti·at·ed, ex·pa·ti·at·ing.

to enlarge in discourse or writing; be copious in description or discussion: to expatiate upon a theme.
Archaic. to move or wander about intellectually, imaginatively, etc., without restraint.

Origin of expatiate

1530–40; < Latin expatiātus past participle of ex(s)patiārī to wander, digress, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + spatiārī to walk about, derivative of spatium space; see -ate1
Related formsex·pa·ti·a·tion, nounex·pa·ti·a·tor, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for expatiate

expound, develop, enlarge, dilate

Examples from the Web for expatiate

Contemporary Examples of expatiate

Historical Examples of expatiate

  • But why expatiate to a stranger on sorrow which must be secret?

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • It is needless to expatiate on its poetic merit or felicity of diction.

    My Reminiscences

    Rabindranath Tagore

  • But I and my chimney must explain; and as we are both rather obese, we may have to expatiate.

    I and My Chimney

    Herman Melville

  • It is useless to expatiate on a code of morals that seems to us positively Japanese.


    Edmund Gosse

  • It cannot be necessary to expatiate at all upon the nature of the offence.

British Dictionary definitions for expatiate


verb (intr)

(foll by on or upon) to enlarge (on a theme, topic, etc) at length or in detail; elaborate (on)
rare to wander about
Derived Formsexpatiation, nounexpatiator, noun

Word Origin for expatiate

C16: from Latin exspatiārī to digress, from spatiārī to walk about
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

Word Origin and History for expatiate

1530s, "walk about, roam freely," from Latin expatiatus/exspatiatus, past participle of expatiari/exspatiari "wander, digress," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + spatiari "to walk, spread out," from spatium (see space). Meaning "talk or write at length" is 1610s. Related: Expatiated; expatiating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper