[ ek-spluh-ney-shuhn ]
See synonyms for: explanationexplanations on Thesaurus.com

  1. the act or process of explaining.

  2. something that explains; a statement made to clarify something and make it understandable; exposition: an explanation of a poem.

  1. a meaning or interpretation: to find an explanation for a mystery.

  2. a mutual declaration of the meaning of words spoken, actions, motives, etc., with a view to adjusting a misunderstanding or reconciling differences: After a long and emotional explanation they were friends again.

Origin of explanation

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English explanacioun, from Latin explānātiōn-, stem of explānātiō, from explānāt(us) “made understandable” (past participle of explānāre “to smooth out, make understandable”) + -iō -ion;see explain

Other words for explanation

Other words from explanation

  • o·ver·ex·pla·na·tion, noun
  • pre·ex·pla·na·tion, noun
  • re·ex·pla·na·tion, noun

Words Nearby explanation

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How to use explanation in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for explanation


/ (ˌɛkspləˈneɪʃən) /

  1. the act or process of explaining

  2. a statement or occurrence that explains

  1. a clarification of disputed terms or points; reconciliation

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