Ex·plain v. t. [imp. & p. p. Explained p. pr. & vb. n. Explaining.]
1. To flatten; to spread out; to unfold; to expand. [Obs.]
The horse-chestnut is . . . ready to explain its leaf. --Evelyn.
2. To make plain, manifest, or intelligible; to clear of obscurity; to expound; to unfold and illustrate the meaning of; as, to explain a chapter of the Bible.
Commentators to explain the difficult passages to you. --Gay.
To explain away, to get rid of by explanation. “Those explain the meaning quite away.”
Syn: -- To expound; interpret; elucidate; clear up.
Ex·plain, v. i. To give an explanation.
v 1: make palin and comprehensible; "He explained the laws of
physics to his students" [syn: explicate]
2: define; "The committe explained their plan for fund-raising
to the Dean"
3: serve as a reason or cause or justification of; "Your need
to sleep late does not excuse your late arrival at work";
"Her recent divorce amy explain her reluctance to date
again" [syn: excuse]