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[v. en-vel-uh p; n. en-vel-uh p, en-vuh-luh p, ahn-] /v. ɛnˈvɛl əp; n. ɛnˈvɛl əp, ˈɛn və ləp, ˈɑn-/
verb (used with object), enveloped, enveloping.
to wrap up in or as in a covering:
The long cloak she was wearing enveloped her completely.
to serve as a wrapping or covering for, as a membrane of an organ or a sheath.
to surround entirely.
Military. to attack (an enemy's flank).
1350-1400; Middle English envolupen < Old French envoluper, equivalent to en- en-1 + voloper to envelop, of obscure origin; compare Old Provençal (en)volopar, Italian inviluppare to envelop, Italian viluppo tuft, bundle, confusion, referred to Medieval Latin faluppa chaff, wisp of straw, perhaps influenced by the descendants of Latin volvere to roll
Related forms
enveloper, noun
preenvelop, verb (used with object)
unenveloped, adjective
Can be confused
envelop, envelope.
1. enfold, cover, hide, conceal. 3. encompass, enclose. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for enveloped
  • The room was enveloped in flames, but no serious damage was done.
  • Yet the gloom has not, so far, enveloped the prime minister.
  • Country cottage designed for a duchess, enveloped in wooded seclusion.
  • For an instant flames enveloped the head of the bride.
  • If the toxic gas penetrates masks and plastic enveloped homes, victims die within hours.
  • His bruised body was enveloped by tubes, bandages, wires and intravenous lines.
  • Then she enveloped that bag within another one, which she left totally open.
  • The seeds are enveloped in meaty, juicy, tasty packages of pure energy.
  • Inside the condo the sweet, pungent odor of insects and rotting food enveloped us.
  • For a second or two he was enveloped in darkness, in water blackened with blood.
British Dictionary definitions for enveloped


verb (transitive) -lops, -loping, -loped
to wrap or enclose in or as if in a covering
to conceal or obscure, as from sight or understanding: a plan enveloped in mystery
to surround or partially surround (an enemy force)
Derived Forms
envelopment, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French envoluper, from en-1 + voluper, voloper, of obscure origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for enveloped



late 14c., envolupen, "be involved in," from Old French envoleper (10c., Modern French envelopper) "envelop, cover; fold up," from en- "in" (see en- (1)) + voloper "wrap up," of uncertain origin, perhaps Celtic (see Gamillscheg, Diez). Literal sense is from 1580s. Related: Enveloped; enveloping.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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