- To exaggerate is defined as to stretch the truth or to make something seem bigger than it is.
An example of exaggerate is when you catch a two pound fish and say you caught a ten pound fish.
- to think, speak, or write of as greater than is really so; magnify beyond the fact; overstate
- to increase or enlarge to an extreme or abnormal degree; overemphasize; intensify
Origin: ; from Classical Latin exaggeratus, past participle of exaggerare, to increase, exaggerate ; from ex-, out, up plush aggerare, to heap up ; from agger, a heap ; from aggerere, to bring toward ; from ad-, to plush gerere, to carry: see gesture
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
verb ex·ag·ger·at·ed, ex·ag·ger·at·ing, ex·ag·ger·ates verb, transitive
- To represent as greater than is actually the case; overstate: exaggerate the size of the enemy force; exaggerated his own role in the episode.
- To enlarge or increase to an abnormal degree: thick lenses that exaggerated the size of her eyes.
Origin: Latin exaggerāre, exaggerāt-, to heap up, magnify : ex-, intensive pref.; see ex- + aggerāre, to pile up (from agger, pile, from aggerere, to bring to : ad-, ad- + gerere, to bring).
- ex·agˈger·atˌed·ly adverb
- ex·agˌger·aˈtion noun
- ex·agˈger·aˌtive, ex·agˈger·a·toˌry adjective
- ex·agˈger·aˌtor noun