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[ih-lis-it] /ɪˈlɪs ɪt/
verb (used with object)
to draw or bring out or forth; educe; evoke:
to elicit the truth; to elicit a response with a question.
Origin of elicit
1635-45; < Latin ēlicitus drawn out (past participle of ēlicere), equivalent to ē- e-1 + lici- draw, lure + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
elicitation, noun
elicitor, noun
nonelicited, adjective
unelicited, adjective
Can be confused
elicit, illicit. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for eliciting
  • The concept of eliciting a cognitive response by manipulating the mouth is not entirely new.
  • The alternative is that the expressions on the screen are actually eliciting the same mood in the subjects.
  • Researchers typically detect pain in mice by eliciting specific reactions.
  • It has done so, but not without eliciting controversy.
  • eliciting basic emotions with film isn't that tough.
  • His bug-eyed glare swept around the room, eliciting delayed nods of agreement from all of them.
  • The result being: the same obvious stuff eliciting the same obvious answers and familiar, stale anecdotes.
  • He would have been much more effective eliciting help.
  • The eliciting of true decisions from evasive moods became for him a fundamental occupation.
  • Given that eliciting shock is a prime goal of pop-ups, the more unpredictable the location, the better.
British Dictionary definitions for eliciting


verb (transitive)
to give rise to; evoke: to elicit a sharp retort
to bring to light: to elicit the truth
Derived Forms
elicitable, adjective
elicitation, noun
elicitor, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Latin ēlicere to lure forth, from licere to entice
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
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Word Origin and History for eliciting



1640s, from Latin elicitus, past participle of elicere "draw forth," from ex- "out" (see ex-) + -licere, comb. form of lacere "to entice, lure, deceive" (related to laqueus "noose, snare;" see lace (n.)). Related: Elicited; eliciting; elicits; elicitation.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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