Adjective "elliptical" definition and examples



Definitions and examples


(of speech or writing) using or involving ellipsis, especially so as to be difficult to understand.
  1. 'she had completely misunderstood his elliptical declaration'
  2. 'That is a phrase which, in our respectful submission, is also apt to mislead, it being an elliptical noun phrase.'
  3. 'This is not an easy task because of Knight's elliptical writing style.'
  4. 'Cocteau, he added, protected his speech with short, tense and elliptical lines which formed a barrier between himself and the reader.'
  5. 'It never strives to say anything in particular, and the backroom drama-what there is of it anyway-is so brief, oblique and elliptical that it merely provides an air of impromptu, on-the-fly context for the dance numbers.'
  6. 'At times, elliptical speech or writing is so concise that listeners and readers must supply missing elements through guesswork or special knowledge, and if they cannot, they fail to understand.'
  7. 'Watching it now it seems even stranger that its oblique characters and elliptical, alien scenes of remote mountain-town malaise managed to hypnotise so many people for two series.'
  8. 'When little observations popped out, they had elliptical power.'
  9. 'To come to understand the grounds for this last rather elliptical claim, we must consider the logical status of ‘God is good.’'
  10. 'I know about than the preposition vs. than the introducer of elliptical clauses, but this example took me (intuitively, not analytically) aback.'
  1. 'Clutch size is two and eggs are white, non-glossy and an elliptical oval shape.'
  2. 'Glossy deep green oval or elliptical leaves grow up to 18 inches long and 5 inches wide.'
  3. 'These are spiral, elliptical, barred spiral and irregular.'
  4. 'He guessed that the original cutting stylus was defective and so he tried a custom-made reproducing stylus, instead of the usual conical or elliptical styli.'
  5. 'They are often elliptical in shape, but sometimes possess hexagonal outlines.'
  6. 'Throughout time, there has been a continual change in the eccentricity of the elliptical orbit.'
  7. 'Newton favoured comets having parabolic orbits, but Halley believed that elliptical orbits might exist.'
  8. 'Small ovoid and elliptical silver baskets were made in the neoclassical style to hold sugar as part of the tea service.'
  9. 'Once you understand elliptical orbits in the classical model, the relativistic model is really a minor modification of it in the cases we are talking about (with much more complex maths).'
  10. 'If you look closely, you can see my chainrings aren't just oval or elliptical as others have been, but is elliptical in three dimensions.'


1. pertaining to or having the form of an ellipse.

2. pertaining to or marked by grammatical ellipsis.

3. (of speech or writing) expressed with extreme or excessive economy; relieved of irrelevant matter: to converse in elliptical sentences.

4. (of a style of speaking or writing) tending to be ambiguous, cryptic, or obscure: an elliptical prose that is difficult to translate. noun

5. Astronomy. elliptical galaxy.

More examples(as adjective)

"wings can be elliptical in planforms."

"shapes can be elliptical for females."

"orbits can be elliptical."

"clauses can be elliptical."

"shapes can be elliptical."

More examples++