elder days = E = elephantine

elegant adj.

[common; from mathematical usage] Combining simplicity, power, and a certain ineffable grace of design. Higher praise than `clever', `winning', or even cuspy.

The French aviator, adventurer, and author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, probably best known for his classic children's book "The Little Prince", was also an aircraft designer. He gave us perhaps the best definition of engineering elegance when he said "A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

El"e*gant (?), a. [L. elegans, -antis; akin to eligere to pick out, choose, select: cf. F. 'el'egant. See Elect.]

1.

Very choice, and hence, pleasing to good taste; characterized by grace, propriety, and refinement, and the absence of every thing offensive; exciting admiration and approbation by symmetry, completeness, freedom from blemish, and the like; graceful; tasteful and highly attractive; as, elegant manners; elegant style of composition; an elegant speaker; an elegant structure.

A more diligent cultivation of elegant literature. Prescott.

2.

Exercising a nice choice; discriminating beauty or sensitive to beauty; as, elegant taste.

Syn. -- Tasteful; polished; graceful; refined; comely; handsome; richly ornamental.

 

© Webster 1913.

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