[ ik-splawr-er, -splohr- ]
/ ɪkˈsplɔr ər, -ˈsploʊr- /
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See synonyms for: explorer / explorers on Thesaurus.com


a person or thing that explores.
a person who investigates unknown regions: the great explorers of the Renaissance.
any instrument used in exploring or sounding a wound, a cavity in a tooth, or the like.
(initial capital letter)Also called Explorer Scout . a person between the ages 14 and 20 who is an active participant in the exploring program sponsored by the Boy Scouts of America.
(initial capital letter)Aerospace. one of a long series of U.S. scientific satellites: Explorer 1 (1958) was the first U.S. artificial satellite.



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“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Origin of explorer

First recorded in 1675–85; explore + -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for explorer

British Dictionary definitions for explorer (1 of 2)

/ (ɪkˈsplɔːrə) /


US a member of the senior branch of the ScoutsBrit equivalent: Venture Scout

British Dictionary definitions for explorer (2 of 2)

/ (ɪkˈsplɔːrə) /


any of the first series of US satellites. Explorer 1, launched in 1958, confirmed the existence of intense radiation belts around the earth
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

Medical definitions for explorer

[ ĭk-splôrər ]


A sharp, pointed probe used on tooth surfaces to detect caries or other defects.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.