change

verb
\ ˈchānj How to pronounce change (audio) \
changed; changing

Definition of change

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make different in some particular : alter never bothered to change the will
b : to make radically different : transform can't change human nature
c : to give a different position, course, or direction to changed his residence from Ohio to California
2a : to replace with another let's change the subject
b : to make a shift from one to another : switch always changes sides in an argument
c : to exchange for an equivalent sum of money (as in smaller denominations or in a foreign currency) change a 20-dollar bill
d : to undergo a modification of foliage changing color
e : to put fresh clothes or covering on change a bed

intransitive verb

1 : to become different some things never change
2 : to undergo transformation, transition, or substitution winter changed to spring
3 : exchange, switch neither liked his seat so they changed with each other
4 : to put on different clothes need a few minutes to change for dinner
5 : to shift one's means of conveyance : transfer on the bus trip he had to change twice
6 of the voice : to shift to lower register : break His voice started to change when he turned 13.
7 of the moon : to pass from one phase (see phase entry 1 sense 1) to another
change hands
: to pass from the possession of one owner to that of another money changes hands many times

change

noun

Definition of change (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act, process, or result of changing: such as
a : alteration a change in the weather
b : transformation a time of vast social change going through changes
c : substitution a change of scenery
d : the passage of the moon from one monthly revolution (see revolution sense 1a) to another also : the passage of the moon from one phase (see phase entry 1 sense 1) to another
e : menopause
2a : money in small denominations received in exchange for an equivalent sum in larger denominations
b : money returned when a payment exceeds the amount due a cashier quick at making change
c : coins especially of low denominations a pocketful of change
d : a negligible additional amount only six minutes and change left in the game
e : money sense 1 cost a large chunk of change
3 : a fresh set of clothes
4 British : exchange sense 5a
5 : changeup
6 : an order in which a set of bells is struck in change ringing

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Other Words from change

Verb

changer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for change

Verb

change, alter, vary, modify mean to make or become different. change implies making either an essential difference often amounting to a loss of original identity or a substitution of one thing for another. changed the shirt for a larger size alter implies a difference in some particular respect without suggesting loss of identity. slightly altered the original design vary stresses a breaking away from sameness, duplication, or exact repetition. vary your daily routine modify suggests a difference that limits, restricts, or adapts to a new purpose. modified the building for use by the disabled

Verb

change, alter, and vary mean to make or become different. change may be used for making such a difference in a thing that it becomes something else. They've changed the house into a restaurant. Change may also be used for substituting one thing for another. We changed our seats for better ones. alter is used for making a small difference in something. He altered the picture by adding color. vary is used for making a difference in order to break away from a routine. The boss varied our tasks.

Examples of change in a Sentence

Verb

He changed from an optimist to a pessimist. The town has changed little in recent years. These events have changed me in my attitude to life. You can't change human nature. Their relationship seems to have changed for the better. The leaves change color from green to red in the fall. She changed her name when she got married. France has changed its monetary unit from the franc to the euro. change the channel on the TV

Noun

There has been little if any change in her daily routine. You shouldn't be afraid of change. Change is a natural part of life. The years have brought many changes to the town's economy. We need to make some changes in the system. Many voters believe that it's time for a change. We've had to make a slight change in the schedule. a change for the worse We've been so busy that a quiet day at home was a welcome change. We eat at home a lot, so dining out sometimes is a nice change. Have you got change for a $10 bill?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

At a hearing in Tacoma on Dec. 12, U.S. District Judge Ronald Leighton sided with the plaintiffs, saying the city’s permit system had to be changed and granting the three people access to the encampment. The (aberdeen) Daily World, The Seattle Times, "Federal judge grants settlement for homeless advocates in lawsuit against Aberdeen," 20 Feb. 2019 Thirty years later, astonishingly little has changed. Marley Marius, Vogue, "Sure, the Oscars Have Been Done Without a Host Before—But That Doesn’t Mean It Works," 18 Feb. 2019 But having put in extensive work to create Jackson's dulcet tones, Cooper's voice has likely changed since filming ended. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Bradley Cooper Won't Perform as Jackson Maine at the Oscars 2019," 16 Feb. 2019 Many of Tod’s competitors have changed their designs to attract these younger consumers and have shifted manufacturing out of Western Europe to cut costs. Eric Sylvers, WSJ, "Tod’s Loafers Have Won Over Royals and Hollywood—But Not Many Millennials," 16 Feb. 2019 Since the law took effect in 1971, nearly half of the states have changed the name to Presidents' Day. Megan Stein, Country Living, "When is Presidents' Day and Why Do We Celebrate It?," 14 Feb. 2019 That fact has changed in recent weeks since the couple announced their plans to divorce, quickly followed by an expose published by the National Enquirer detailing Jeff's ongoing affair with Lauren Sanchez. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Who Is Jeff Bezos's Soon-to-Be Ex-Wife, Novelist MacKenzie Bezos?," 14 Feb. 2019 Moore’s Law, plus the rapid pace of electronics miniaturization, has changed everything. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Army’s Next Infantry Guns Will Have Computerized Fire Control for Unreal Accuracy," 14 Feb. 2019 Thankfully, much has changed since then — including Simon's relationship with Susan. Heather Finn, Good Housekeeping, "Simon Cowell Admits to His "Disgusting" Past After Susan Boyle's 'AGT' Performance," 12 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Start from a realistic place and make gradual changes. Jaclyn London, Ms, Rd, Cdn, Good Housekeeping, "Using a Food Journal Can Help You Lose Weight — And Actually Keep It Off," 28 Feb. 2019 That change was made a century ago, meaning the Constitution hasn’t been updated to reflect women’s rights since shortly after the invention of the bra. Chloe Angyal, Marie Claire, "Kamala Harris Says It’s Time To Make Women Full Citizens At Last," 27 Feb. 2019 The great superpower of the network is bringing people together to create system change, to start tackling big questions and even bigger structural systems. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Getting around the Bay Area with Chanell Fletcher," 21 Dec. 2018 That change was part of Google’s new focus for Hangouts, which will stay safe for now as a workplace communication tool in the form of G Suite’s Hangouts Chat, as well as video conferencing platform Hangouts Meet. Dami Lee, The Verge, "Google may shut down Hangouts for consumers in 2020," 30 Nov. 2018 The scene between Sophie and Joseph on the beach in episode five really marks a change for both of their characters. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Victoria Actress Lily Travers Talks About the Duchess of Monmouth's Passionate New Romance," 18 Feb. 2019 Declaring a national emergency to build a wall on the southern border would be a big change in the use of the power. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "Donald Trump Is Threatening to Declare a National Emergency to Get Border Wall Funding. Here's Why He Shouldn’t.," 11 Jan. 2019 These all point to the potential of entry-level construction being more attractive to builders, which would be a welcome change for affordable housing advocates. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "Why shrinking U.S. homes may be a boost to homebuyers," 29 Nov. 2018 The drop was due mainly to a hefty benefit from tax changes in the prior-year quarter. Mae Anderson, The Seattle Times, "Disney’s 1st-quarter results beat expectations," 6 Feb. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'change.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of change

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for change

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French changer, from Latin cambiare to exchange, probably of Celt origin; akin to Old Irish camm crooked

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Learn More about change

Statistics for change

Last Updated

11 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for change

The first known use of change was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for change

change

verb

English Language Learners Definition of change

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to become different
: to make (someone or something) different
: to become something else

change

noun

English Language Learners Definition of change (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of becoming different or of causing someone or something to become different
: the act of replacing one thing with another
: the act of moving from one plane, train, etc., to another in order to continue a journey

change

verb
\ ˈchānj How to pronounce change (audio) \
changed; changing

Kids Definition of change

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make or become different changing autumn leaves I like how you've changed this room.
2 : to give a different position, course, or direction to I changed my plans.
3 : to put one thing in the place of another : switch Our teacher made us change places.
4 : to give or receive an equal amount of money in usually smaller units of value or in the money of another country Can you change a ten-dollar bill?
5 : to put fresh clothes or covering on change a bed
6 : to put on different clothes We always change for dinner.
change hands
: to pass from one person's possession or ownership to another's The restaurant has changed hands.

change

noun

Kids Definition of change (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act, process, or result of making or becoming different There's been a change in plans. a change of seasons
2 : something that is different from what is usual or expected The trip was a welcome change from our routine.
3 : a fresh set of clothes Pack several changes for your vacation.
4 : money in small units of value received in exchange for an equal amount in larger units Do you have change for a ten-dollar bill?
5 : money returned when a payment is more than the amount due Don't forget your change.
6 : money in coins I have two dollars in change.

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More from Merriam-Webster on change

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with change

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for change

Spanish Central: Translation of change

Nglish: Translation of change for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of change for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about change

Comments on change

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