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explain verb

ADV. in detail I wrote explaining the issues in great detail. | fully The reasons for the accident have not been fully explained. | adequately, properly, satisfactorily | partly This partly explains why he was so late. | briefly | easily, readily This phenomenon can be easily explained. | clearly | carefully | patiently The doctor explained patiently what the treatment would be. | earnestly | concisely, succinctly, tersely The general principles behind the method used are explained clearly and concisely. ‘We've already paid,’ I explained tersely. | awkwardly, lamely | breathlessly, excitedly

VERB + EXPLAIN be able/unable to, can/could I know I'm late, but I can explain why. | attempt to, seek to, try to | help (to) | purport to Many theories purport to explain growth in terms of a single cause. | be difficult to, be hard to It's difficult to explain exactly how the system works. | hasten to She saw his quick frown and hastened to explain. | let sb Let me explain what I mean.

PREP. about She tried to explain about her fears and anxieties. | to She explained the plan to me very carefully.

PHRASES explain everything I've got a letter here which explains everything. | go a long way/some way towards explaining sth This goes some way towards explaining the hostility between the two groups.