noun \kən-ˌfi-gyə-ˈrā-shən, ˌkän-, -gə-ˈ\

: the way the parts of something are arranged

computers : the way a computer system or program is prepared for a particular use

Full Definition of CONFIGURATION

a :  relative arrangement of parts or elements: as (1) :  shape (2) :  contour of land <configuration of the mountains> (3) :  functional arrangement <a small business computer system in its simplest configuration>
b :  something (as a figure, contour, pattern, or apparatus) that results from a particular arrangement of parts or components
c :  the stable structural makeup of a chemical compound especially with reference to the space relations of the constituent atoms
:  gestalt <personality configuration>
con·fig·u·ra·tion·al \-shnəl, -shə-nəl\ adjective
con·fig·u·ra·tion·al·ly adverb
con·fig·u·ra·tive \-ˈfi-gyə-rə-tiv, -ˈfi-gə-\ adjective


  1. We'll have to change the configuration of the system to accommodate the new server.
  2. <the basic configuration of the building is that of a geodesic dome>


Late Latin configuration-, configuratio similar formation, from Latin configurare to form from or after, from com- + figurare to form, from figura figure
First Known Use: 1559


abbreviation, abomination, acceleration, accentuation, accommodation, accreditation, acculturation, accumulation, actualization, adjudication, administration, adulteration, affiliation, agglomeration, alienation, alleviation, alliteration, amalgamation, amelioration, amplification, anglicization, annihilation, annunciation, anticipation, appreciation, appropriation, approximation, argumentation, articulation, asphyxiation, assassination, asseveration, assimilation, association, atomization, attenuation, authentication, authorization, autoxidation, balkanization, bastardization, beautification, bowdlerization, calcification, canonization, capitulation, centralization, certification, cicatrization, civilization, clarification, classification, coagulation, codification, coeducation, cogeneration, cohabitation, collaboration, colonization, colorization, commemoration, commiseration, communication, concatenation, conciliation, confabulation, confederation, conglomeration, congratulation, consideration, consolidation, contamination, continuation, cooperation, coordination, corroboration, cross-pollination, crystallization, deactivation, debilitation, decapitation, deceleration, deconsecration, de-escalation, defenestration, defibrillation, deforestation, defragmentation, degeneration, deification, deliberation, delineation, demonization, denomination, denunciation, depopulation, depreciation, deracination, deregulation, desegregation, despoliation, determination, devaluation, digitization, disapprobation, discoloration, discrimination, disembarkation, disinclination, disinformation, disintegration, Disneyfication, dissemination, dissimulation, dissociation, documentation, domestication, dramatization, echolocation, edification, ejaculation, elaboration, elimination, elucidation, emaciation, emancipation, emasculation, enumeration, enunciation, equalization, equivocation, eradication, evacuation, evaluation, evaporation, evisceration, exaggeration, examination, exasperation, exhilaration, exoneration, expropriation, extenuation, extermination, extrapolation, facilitation, falsification, felicitation, feminization, fertilization, feudalization, finalization, Finlandization, formalization, fortification, fossilization, gasification, gentrification, gesticulation, globalization, glorification, gratification, habituation, hallucination, harmonization, humanization, humiliation, hyperinflation, idolization, illumination, imagination, impersonation, implementation, improvisation, inauguration, incarceration, incineration, incorporation, incrimination, indoctrination, inebriation, infatuation, initiation, inoculation, insemination, insinuation, instrumentation, internalization, interpretation, interrelation, interrogation, intimidation, intoxication, invagination, invalidation, investigation, invigoration, irradiation, itemization, justification, legalization, liberalization, magnetization, magnification, maladaptation, manifestation, manipulation, matriculation, maximization, mechanization, memorization, miscegenation, mobilization, modernization, modification, mortification, multiplication, mystification, nationalization, naturalization, negotiation, normalization, notification, novelization, nullification, obliteration, organization, origination, orientation, ornamentation, ossification, oxygenation, pacification, paralyzation, participation, pasteurization, perambulation, peregrination, perpetuation, personalization, petrification, polarization, pontification, precipitation, predestination, prefabrication, prefiguration, premeditation, preoccupation, preordination, preregistration, prettification, privatization, procrastination, prognostication, proliferation, propitiation, purification, qualification, ramification, randomization, ratification, realization, reciprocation, recombination, recommendation, recrimination, recuperation, redecoration, reduplication, reforestation, refrigeration, regeneration, regimentation, regurgitation, reification, reincarnation, reintegration, reiteration, rejuvenation, remuneration, renunciation, repatriation, representation, republication, repudiation, retaliation, reverberation, sanctification, scarification, sedimentation, sensitization, Serbo-Croatian, signification, simplification, socialization, solicitation, sophistication, specialization, specification, stabilization, standardization, sterilization, stratification, subordination, subpopulation, supplementation, synchronization, systemization, teleportation, tergiversation, transfiguration, transliteration, transvaluation, triangulation, uglification, unification, unionization, urbanization, verification, versification, victimization, vilification, vituperation, vocalization, vulgarization, westernization, x-radiation


noun \kən-ˌfig-(y)ə-ˈrā-shən, ˌkän-\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of CONFIGURATION

a : relative arrangement of parts or elements b : the stable structural makeup of a chemical compound especially with reference to the space relations of the constituent atoms
: gestalt <personality configuration>
con·fig·u·ra·tion·al \-shnəl, -shən-əl\ adjective
con·fig·u·ra·tion·al·ly \-ē\ adverb
con·fig·u·ra·tive \-ˈfig-(y)ə-rət-iv\ adjective


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In chemistry, the arrangement in space of the atoms in a molecule. It is especially important in organic chemistry (see organic compound), in which each carbon atom in a molecule can form from two to four covalent bonds (see bonding) with as many as four other atoms. A carbon atom with four single bonds, for example, lies at the centre of a tetrahedron, with one bond extending to each corner; if three or all four atoms bonded to the carbon are different, the structure that results has two different mirror-image (see optical activity; isomer) forms, similar to left- and right-handed gloves. Configuration issues also apply to some inorganic compounds. Until late in the 20th century, chemists struggled to determine the true three-dimensional form (absolute configuration) of a molecule experimentally, but modern optical and chemical methods have greatly simplified the task. The term electronic configuration refers to the number of electrons in the various shells of an atom, which defines its chemical reactivity and the type of bonding in which it participates.


Next Word in the Dictionary: configurationism
Previous Word in the Dictionary: configurated
All Words Near: configuration

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up configuration? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).