Difference Between Allude and Elude

Main Difference – Allude vs Elude

Even though allude and elude are not homophones, many people confuse these two verbs. They are also relatively similar in their spelling. Despite these similarities in sound and spelling, they have distinctly different meanings. Allude means to make an indirect suggestion. Elude means to escape or evade something or someone. This disparity in meaning is the main difference between allude and elude.

Allude – Meaning and Usage

Allude comes from the Latin alluder meaning to suggest or hint at. Allude means to make an indirect reference to something. It has the meaning to suggest or indirectly call attention to something. The following examples will clarify the meaning of allude.

The writer alludes to Shakespeare’s work in his novel.

The judge alluded to his previous crimes.

Her speech alludes to the remarks made by the president.

She alluded to James, but never mentioned his name.

This idiom alludes to the power of nature.

He made a remake alluding to the way she was dressed.

The teacher specifically alluded to our project.

His novel alludes to the caste system existent in the 19th century.

Note that the verb allude is always followed by the preposition ‘to’. This is an intransitive verb. It is also important to notice that the literary device allusion (brief reference to a person, place, thing or idea of historical, cultural, literary or political significance in a literary work) stems from the verb allude.

Main Difference - Allude vs Elude

This painting alludes to the ‘Winged Victory of Samothrace’.

Elude – Meaning and Usage

Elude comes from the Latin eludere meaning to delude or baffle. The verb elude has two meanings. Elude can mean to escape or evade something or someone. At the same time, it can also refer to the failure to achieve or attain something.  The simple meaning of this verb is to escape, either physically or mentally. Elude is a transitive verb and therefore not followed by any prepositions. Given below are some sentences which are constructed using the verb elude.

Meaning 1: Evade or escape

The thief eluded the police cleverly.

The convict escaped from the police and eluded the police for several days.

He tried to elude the punishment by hiding under the bed.

They eluded the storm by taking refuge in a small cabin.

Meaning 2:  to fail to be understood or grasp something

The underlying meaning of the poem eluded my understanding.

His philosophical way of thinking eluded us.

The new theory introduced by our boss eludes even the wisest among us.

Advanced principals of chemistry elude the understanding of most humans.

Difference Between Allude and Elude

She eluded the punishment by hiding.

Difference Between Allude and Elude

Number of Meanings

Allude has only one meaning.

Elude has two meanings.


Allude means to suggest or indirectly call attention to something.

Elude means to escape something/someone or to fail to achieve or attain something. 


Allude is always followed by the preposition ‘to’.

Elude is not followed by any prepositions.


Allude is an intransitive verb.

Elude is a transitive verb.Difference Between Allude and Elude - infographic

Image Courtesy:

“Hide” By Loveteamin – Own work,  via 

” A virgin” By Abbott Handerson Thayer – from Smithsonian page (Public Domain)

About the Author: admin

Related pages

ethyl alcohol vs isopropyl alcoholadding fonts to microsoft wordsomatic cells definitiondefinition of abiotic resourcesexamples of caesura in literatureforeshadowing literary deviceagnostic vs atheist vs deistdefine autotrophic and heterotrophicsardonic exampledifference between predicate nominative and predicate adjectivewhats monomervernier micrometer least countdefine pteridophytathe difference between adult and embryonic stem cellshydrometer definewhat is the difference between drama and theatersaturated and unsaturated fatty acids structureactive vs passive romdifference between a condo and townhousedefinition sardonicallysoughting meaningwhat is the difference between voltmeter and ammeteryield stress meaningcharacteristics of a monologuesatire parody examplescharacteristics of modernism and postmodernismnpn transistor wikipediadifference in diffusion and osmosissugarcane and sugar beetwhat is the difference between synapsis and crossing overgranulated beet sugardefine simple squamous epitheliumtrial balance usesdefine informal dictiondifference between basil and tulsidifference between rum and white rumthe difference between a language and a dialectbicarbonate of soda chemical formulahunger vs appetitedifference between unicellular and multicellular organismscomparative and superlative form of niceloss adjectivechromatin vs chromosomesdeclarative sentences examples listfettuccine or linguinedifference between bmr and rmrsimple pendulum and compound pendulumwhat is the difference between mineral and orenucleolus and nucleusthe difference between insulators and conductorsshort story of the ugly ducklingdistinguish between prokaryotic and eukaryotic cellsdefinition centriolesascent meaningc3 and c4 plants differencewhat is the difference between manic depressive and bipolarpast participle gerundsensory imagery examplesmoan and groan meaningmarxism literary criticismassimilation accommodationdifference between porifera and coelenteratasherbet and sorbetszechuan hunandifference between threat vulnerability and riskdifference between switch and relaywhat's the definition of cytoplasmassimilation piaget examplesynonym for methodicalin a suspension particles cannot be seen through a microscopeare moose and elk the same thingco32 resonance structurehow to write a formal and informal letter formatwhat is the difference between prokaryotic and eukaryoticdefinition of endosperm