tr.v. e·lect·ed, e·lect·ing, e·lects
1. To select by vote for an office or for membership: elected her club president.
2. To pick out; select: elect an art course.
3. To decide, especially by preference: elected to take the summer off.
4. To select by divine will for salvation. Used of God.
1. Chosen deliberately; singled out: an elect group of advisers.
a. Elected but not yet installed. Often used in combination: the governor-elect.
b. Chosen for marriage. Often used in combination: the bride-elect.
3. Selected by divine will for salvation.
1. One that is chosen or selected.
2. One selected by divine will for salvation.
3. (used with a pl. verb) An exclusive group of people. Used with the: one of the elect who have power inside the government.
[Middle English electen, from Latin ēligere, ēlēct-, to select : ē-, ex-, ex- + legere, to choose; see leg- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.