Simple Definition of modify
: to change some parts of (something) while not changing other parts
grammar : to limit or describe the meaning of (a word or group of words)
Full Definition of modify
1 : to make less extreme : moderate
2 a : to limit or restrict the meaning of especially in a grammatical construction b : to change (a vowel) by umlaut
3 a : to make minor changes in b : to make basic or fundamental changes in often to give a new orientation to or to serve a new end <the wing of a bird is an arm modified for flying>
: to undergo change
modifiabilityplay \ˌmä-də-ˌfī-ə-ˈbi-lə-tē\ noun
modifiableplay \ˈmä-də-ˌfī-ə-bəl\ adjective
Examples of modify in a sentence
We can help you modify an existing home or build a new one.
He modified the recipe by using oil instead of butter.
She has modified her views on the matter.
The design was modified to add another window.
We played a modified version of our favorite game.
Adjectives usually modify nouns, and adverbs usually modify verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs.
In the phrase “a red hat,” the adjective “red” modifies the noun “hat.”
Origin and Etymology of modify
Middle English modifien, from Anglo-French modifier, from Latin modificare to measure, moderate, from modus
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of modify
Rhymes with modify
abide by, Adonai, alibi, alkali, amplify, apple-pie, argufy, assegai, azo dye, basify, beautify, butterfly, by-and-by, caddis fly, calcify, certify, Chou En-lai, citify, clarify, classify, coalify, cockneyfy, codify, college try, cottage pie, crucify, cut-and-try, cutie-pie, DIY, damnify, damselfly, dandify, deify, densify, dignify, dobsonfly, do-or-die, dragonfly, dulcify, eagle eye, edify, evil eye, falsify, fancify, fortify, frenchify, fructify, gasify, Gemini, gentrify, glorify, goggle-eye, goldeneye, gratify, Haggai, harvest fly, hexerei, high and dry, hip and thigh, Hokusai, hook and eye, horrify, hoverfly, humble pie, Iceni, justify, kiss good-bye, lazy eye, lignify, liquefy, lithify, Lorelei, lullaby, Madurai, magnify, Malachi, Maracay, minify, mollify, Molokai, Mordecai, mortify, multi-ply, multiply, mummify, mystify, nazify, notify, nullify, occupy, old school tie, on standby, on the fly, ossify, overbuy, overfly, overlie, pacify, Paraguay, passerby, peccavi, petrify, PPI, preachify, prettify, private eye, prophesy, purify, putrefy, qualify, quantify, ramify, rarefy, ratify, RBI, rectify, reify, res gestae, robber fly, runner's high, Russify, samurai, sanctify, satisfy, scarify, schwarmerei, semidry, set store by, shepherd's pie, shoofly pie, signify, simplify, Spanish fly, specify, speechify, stratify, stultify, stupefy, sweetie pie, Tenebrae, terrify, testify, tie-and-dye, tigereye, Trans Alai, tumble dry, typify, uglify, underlie, unify, Uruguay, Veneti, verify, versify, vilify, vinify, vitrify, vivify, weather eye, Windsor tie, xanthene dye, yuppify, zombify
MODIFY Defined for Kids
Definition of modify for Students
1 : to make changes in <modify a plan>
2 : to lower or reduce in amount or scale <In a little while familiarity modified their fears … — Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer>
3 : to limit in meaning : qualify <The word “green” in the phrase “green gloves” modifies the word “gloves.”>
Seen and Heard
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