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ABC Chinese–English Comprehensive Dictionary (2003). I can't access the "slightly revised through July 2005" ed. p 278. Zdic.net annunciates the same meanings.

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Doubtless, "perfunctory" is the polar opposite of "expound". So how can 敷衍 signify both 'perfunctory' and 'expound'?

  • 敷衍->expound,我这辈子都没见过这种用法。 – Zhang 2 days ago
  • Zhang is right. Must be a literature big shot used it in his famous work. Editors had no choice but to include it in dictionary, like Thomas Hardy's case. So, just neglect it. So many other terms for "expound", why choose this one? 尽信书不如无书。 Of course now is 尽信网不如无网。 Even Teacher G often mislead people. – James Liu 刘老师 yesterday
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敷演 is an ancient expression while 敷衍 is still in use. They are different words.

I am not sure why 演 in 敷演 can be replaced by 衍.

ref:

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