1. a person or thing that elevates or raises.
  2. a moving platform or cage for carrying passengers or freight from one level to another, as in a building.
  3. any of various mechanical devices for raising objects or materials.
  4. a building in which grain is stored and handled by means of mechanical elevator and conveyor devices.
  5. Aeronautics. a hinged horizontal surface on an airplane or the like, used to control the longitudinal inclination and usually placed at the tail end of the fuselage.
  6. elevator shoe.


  1. a person or thing that elevates
  2. mainly US a mechanical hoist for raising something, esp grain or coal, often consisting of a chain of scoops linked together on a conveyor belt
  3. mainly US and Canadian a platform, compartment, or cage raised or lowered in a vertical shaft to transport persons or goods in a buildingAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): lift
  4. mainly US and Canadian a large granary equipped with an elevator and, usually, facilities for cleaning and grading the grain
  5. any muscle that raises a part of the body
  6. a surgical instrument for lifting a part of the body
  7. a control surface on the tailplane of an aircraft, for making it climb or descend

1640s, originally of muscles, from Latin elevator, agent noun from past participle stem of elevare (see elevate). As a name for a mechanical lift (originally for grain) attested from 1787. Elevator music is attested by 1963. Elevator as a lift for shoes is from 1940.


  1. A surgical instrument used to elevate tissues or to raise a sunken part, such as a depressed fragment of bone.
  2. A dental instrument used to remove teeth or parts of teeth that cannot be gripped with a forceps or to loosen teeth and roots before using forceps.

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