el·lipse /ɪˈlɪps, ɛ-/
1. Geom. An oval or oblong figure, bounded by a regular curve, which corresponds to an oblique projection of a circle, or an oblique section of a cone through its opposite sides. The greatest diameter of the ellipse is the major axis, and the least diameter is the minor axis. See Conic section, under Conic, and cf. Focus.
2. Gram. Omission. See Ellipsis.
3. The elliptical orbit of a planet.
The Sun flies forward to his brother Sun;
The dark Earth follows wheeled in her ellipse. --Tennyson.
n : a closed plane curve resulting from the intersection of a
circular cone and a plane cutting completely through it;
"the sums of the distances from the foci to any point on
an ellipse is constant" [syn: oval]