Definition of interpretation in English:



  • 1The action of explaining the meaning of something.

    ‘the interpretation of data’
    • ‘The Queen and King require less interpretation, for we understand them as the major male and female archetypes.’
    • ‘The atmospheric exhibition will showcase the best in new display technology, design and interpretation.’
    • ‘As the article explains, these noises exist, but interpretation of them is largely down to the individual.’
    • ‘Both contain superior playing and interpretation of the materials at hand.’
    • ‘This doctrine lives on today as one of many maxims for contractual interpretation.’
    • ‘A simple difference of interpretation explained their different results.’
    • ‘Knowing the level of inference will subsequently aid interpretation of the statistical methods.’
    • ‘Exactly what he meant by that is open to a whole lot of interpretation.’
    • ‘He apparently did not explain what he meant, so it's open to interpretation.’
    • ‘Judges are constrained in how they declare the law and in their interpretation of the law.’
    • ‘Those who are in the business of interpretation know that reading is a complicated matter.’
    • ‘Well, there's lots to mull over there, and I won't try to add much in the way of interpretation.’
    • ‘There are many levels of interpretation and many levels of understanding.’
    • ‘Their strict moral agenda is based on literal interpretation of the bible.’
    • ‘What explains the increasing tendency toward this mode of interpretation of past experience?’
    • ‘I understood that the text of the law was open to interpretation based on common sense, and that's what precedent was.’
    • ‘All understanding is interpretation and interpretation is essentially linguistic.’
    • ‘I think it's supposed to be open to interpretation whether it's the same Alabama.’
    • ‘I conclude that the Board erred in its interpretation of the legal standard for capacity.’
    • ‘Is the common theme of the three readings, then, simply that they all involve interpretation?’
    explanation, elucidation, expounding, exposition, explication, exegesis, clarification, definition
    analysis, reading, evaluation, review, study, examination, diagnosis
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    1. 1.1 An explanation or way of explaining.
      ‘this action is open to a number of interpretations’
      • ‘The subsequent interpretations of the debate by the panel and others were also totally unsurprising.’
      • ‘Their understanding and interpretation is apt to be different from that of an outsider.’
      • ‘Although no one interpretation is true in an absolute sense, some interpretations of art seem better than others.’
      • ‘The first is concerned with the distribution of the strict and sloppy interpretations.’
      • ‘This second interpretation stands the first interpretation on its head.’
      • ‘This is where we run into trouble when we demand strict interpretations of questions and answers.’
      • ‘So I guess it is best that our attorneys stay within the strictest interpretation of the law and that I step away.’
      • ‘It then looks at the interpretations and explanations that have been given by various academic commentators.’
      • ‘That will lead them to a false conclusion worse than their interpretation of the truth.’
      • ‘According to this, more people in Guinea are embracing very strict interpretations of Islam.’
      • ‘I think that this had to be made explicit by me, namely to stop all kinds of interpretations.’
      • ‘Under their strict interpretation of Islam it could include death sentences.’
      • ‘Our understanding and interpretation of what we see is transformed as our visual sensibilities evolve.’
      • ‘I want you to listen to what he said in explaining his interpretation of this deal.’
      • ‘There were several individual attempts at explicitly Marxist interpretations of Shakespeare.’
      • ‘Once this is ready, then all the regional variations and subjective interpretations can be laid to rest.’
      • ‘His interpretations of this vary, but are defined by an intense tunnel vision that blocks out the rest of the world.’
      • ‘This is a brilliant antidote to the usual simplistic interpretations of imperialist adventures.’
      • ‘Every day there seem to be further clashing interpretations and contradictory claims about America's war talk.’
      • ‘I think it is giving this definition far too wide an interpretation.’
      meaning, understanding, construal, connotation, reading, explanation, inference, conclusion, supposition
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    2. 1.2 A stylistic representation of a creative work or dramatic role.
      ‘two differing interpretations, both bearing the distinctive hallmarks of each writer's perspective’
      • ‘The Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice is a jewel for creative interpretation.’
      • ‘Gemma and Laura take great interest in the different interpretations of the same role by each principal.’
      • ‘Several works will be played more than once, giving us a chance to compare strikingly different interpretations.’
      • ‘Each viewer brings their own frame of reference, which triggers an unique interpretation of the work.’
      • ‘The text and all the artworks, thankfully, do not present an obvious interpretation of the title.’
      • ‘The programme thus offers a sophisticated interpretation of the nature of law and the role that law plays in people's lives.’
      • ‘The Beckett Society sent Evans a letter congratulating him on his interpretation of the role.’
      • ‘The work itself does not appear to offer any dramatically new information or new interpretations.’
      • ‘Her interpretation and singing in that role, as far as I was concerned, was magical.’
      • ‘It will be fascinating to see in the future how different interpretations of the role go.’
      • ‘These variations were followed by three very different interpretations of Stravinsky.’
      • ‘It is difficult to imagine what cello music would be without Ma's unique interpretations.’
      • ‘There are videos and displays of still photographs all offering different interpretations of the main theme.’
      rendition, rendering, execution, presentation, performance, reading, playing, singing
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Late Middle English: from Old French interpretation or Latin interpretatio(n-), from the verb interpretari (see interpret).