change

verb
\ˈchānj \
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

Keep scrolling for more

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?
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

As the sun disappeared over 29th Street, the mood of the evening would change. Jacques Kelly, baltimoresun.com, "Remembering Baltimore's magical glow from gaslights on a summer night," 14 July 2018 This strategic move to replace Dock Landing Ships with an LPD 17-like hull seems to speak to a Navy effort to expand amphibious capability to adjust to a new, fast-changing threat environment. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "Navy pushes for more amphibious assault ships," 13 July 2018 Not every subject within this list played for the eventual champion, but all of them made a game-changing impact. Ben Ladner, SI.com, "The 10 Best National Championship Game Performances of the BCS Era," 13 July 2018 The chain has struggled to keep up with a changing marketplace. Jaewon Kang And Dawn Lim, WSJ, "Tim Hortons Tests China’s Appetite for Canadian Coffee," 11 July 2018 Ellicott City and the Chesapeake watershed demonstrate the challenges of responding to a changing climate and the impacts of human activity. Bill Gourgey, WIRED, "How Artificial Intelligence Could Prevent Natural Disasters," 10 July 2018 Now, the future of greenhouse gas regulation is in the hands of Chief Justice Roberts, who could well change his mind about revisiting Massachusetts v. EPA. Emily Atkin, The New Republic, "How the New Supreme Court Could Halt Climate Action," 12 July 2018 Meadows said Tuesday that CSX has made several safety changes since the crash, including requiring employees that change track switches to verbally confirm changes with other crewmembers. Meg Kinnard, The Seattle Times, "Investigators grill train company about deadly crash in SC," 10 July 2018 Mr Dershowitz says that could change, for example if a president refused to leave office after being found guilty by the Senate. The Economist, "The case against impeachment," 12 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

With the change in air mass, Wednesday and Thursday should be pleasant, bringing dry weather and a glimpse of sun, Simpson said. Elise Takahama, BostonGlobe.com, "Scattered showers will hit Boston this weekend, along with increasing clouds and humidity," 14 July 2018 The change in culture introduced by Kelly is one of reason UCLA is No. Matt Murschel, OrlandoSentinel.com, "New coach Chip Kelly’s UCLA Bruins are No. 45 in 2018 preseason college football rankings," 13 July 2018 Obviously, the change in car has affected everyone in the Chevy camp. Jason Hoffman, Cincinnati.com, "Dale Earnhardt Jr. talk about life after racing, Kentucky Speedway and the Chevy Camaro," 13 July 2018 And this change in mindset opened a whole new door for the internet to reinterpret women and relationships through viral content. Kathryn Lindsay, refinery29.com, "Why Be Engaged When You Can Be An Ex?," 13 July 2018 The big changes in season 5 include the addition of four-person golf carts, the first proper vehicles in the game, following the shopping carts from last season. Andrew Webster, The Verge, "Fortnite season 5 introduces temporal rifts, golf carts, and new locations," 12 July 2018 Perhaps more important than the numbers is the change in attitude that the degree apprenticeships represent. The Economist, "A welcome upgrade to apprenticeships," 12 July 2018 If either Moïse or Lafontant are forced out, the change in government could open yet another new chapter of political uncertainty for Haiti. Jacqueline Charles, miamiherald, "Haiti’s low fuel prices unfairly benefit the rich and need to be raised, IMF says," 12 July 2018 Challenges will only grow as change in this century continues at a blistering pace. James Stavridis, Time, "Democracy Isn't Perfect, But It Will Still Prevail," 12 July 2018

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.

See More

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

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

Noun

see change entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about change

Statistics for change

Last Updated

4 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for change

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for change

change

verb

English Language Learners Definition of change

: to become different

: to make (someone or something) different

: to become something else

change

verb
\ˈchānj \
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.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on change

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

WORD OF THE DAY

playful or foolish behavior

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!