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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Aggrandize \Ag"gran*dize\, v. i. To increase or become great. [Obs.]

Follies, continued till old age, do aggrandize.
--J. Hall.


Aggrandize \Ag"gran*dize\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Aggrandized; p. pr. & vb. n. Aggrandizing.] [F. agrandir; [`a] (L. ad) + grandir to increase, L. grandire, fr. grandis great. See Grand, and cf. Finish.]

  1. To make great; to enlarge; to increase; as, to aggrandize our conceptions, authority, distress.

  2. To make great or greater in power, rank, honor, or wealth; -- applied to persons, countries, etc.

    His scheme for aggrandizing his son.

  3. To make appear great or greater; to exalt.

    Syn: To augment; exalt; promote; advance.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1630s, "to make larger, increase," from French agrandiss-, present participle stem of agrandir "to augment" (16c.), ultimately from Latin ad "to" (see ad-) + grandire "to make great," from grandis (see grand (adj.)). The double -g- spelling in English is by analogy with Latin words in ad-. Related: Aggrandized; aggrandizing.


vb. 1 (context transitive English) To make great; to enlarge; to increase. 2 (context transitive English) To make great or greater in power, rank, honor, or wealth; applied to persons, countries, etc. 3 (context transitive English) To make appear great or greater; to exalt. 4 (context intransitive English) To increase or become great.


v. add details to [syn: embroider, pad, lard, embellish, aggrandise, blow up, dramatize, dramatise]

Usage examples of "aggrandize".

Spain against the emperor in Italy, so as to aggrandize the house of Bourbon.

Apart from the requirements of a gradation of ranks, or the consequences of a conquest, the multitude delight to surround their chiefs with privileges--whether it be that their vanity makes them thus to aggrandize one of their own creations, or whether they try to conceal the humiliation of subjection by exaggerating the importance of those who rule them.

Germany, under certain capitulations, obliging the prince thus chosen to govern according to law, would become an hereditary succession, perpetuated in one family, which of course must be aggrandized to the prejudice of its co-estates, and the ruin of the Germanic liberties.

He stood upon an eminence--he might Have been a very father to his people, But all his aim and pleasure was to raise Himself and his own house: and now may those Whom he has aggrandized, lament for him.

The communication revolution, seen by sociologists like Baudrillard to be the key constitutive feature of our age, has aggrandized the media to the point where signs have displaced their referents, where images of the Real have usurped the authority of the Real, whence the subject is engulfed by simulacra.

The scale of such vistas so great that their sense of themselves, the plain humanness aggrandizing every puny ego, lost its turgor, its shape, a goodly portion of its size.

It must be humanitary or beneficent in its aims, and not inhuman and malevolent, as is always the case when the weak are subjected to distinguish, aggrandize, and enrich those who subject them.

The dictates of true policy dissuaded her from contributing to her further conquest in that kingdom, which would have proved the source of contention among the allies, depressed the house of Bourbon below the standard of importance which the balance of Europe required it should maintain, and aggrandize the states-general at the expense of Great Britain.

The view of aggrandizing my family, of ennobling yourself, is what I proceed upon.

But he was no sooner in Milan but he began to prevaricate and send supplies to Pope Alexander to put him in possession of Romagna, not considering that thereby he weakened himself and disobliged his friends who had thrown themselves into his arms, and aggrandized the Church by adding to its spiritual authority (which was so formidable before) so great a proportion of temporal.

It would be regular Lestat talk, for nobody aggrandizes as he does his preposterous adventures.

Combers of talk and laughter rolled aggrandizing from pillar to pillar with the beat of drum and guitar.