compose

verb
com·​pose | \ kəm-ˈpōz How to pronounce compose (audio) \
composed; composing

Definition of compose

transitive verb

1a : to form by putting together : fashion a committee composed of three representativesCurrent Biography
b : to form the substance of : constitute composed of many ingredients
c : to produce (columns, pages of type, etc.) by composition
2a : to create by mental or artistic labor : produce compose a sonnet
b(1) : to formulate and write (a piece of music) composed a symphony
(2) : to compose music for
3 : to deal with or act on so as to reduce to a minimum compose their differences
4 : to arrange in proper or orderly form The two men had laid him on the bed, and composed his limbs.— Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
5 : to free from agitation : calm, settle composed himself Life moves on, … and one must compose oneself to meet it …— Rose Macaulay

intransitive verb

: to practice composition (as of literary, musical, or typographical work) At the age of 10, he was composing at the piano.

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Examples of compose in a Sentence

She composed a letter to her sister. He is in his studio composing.

Recent Examples on the Web

And the tense group dynamics are suspended, at least at first, by the weird splendor of the gathering that awaits them — a spectacle that cinematographer Pawel Pogorzelski captures in a succession of breathtakingly composed and choreographed images. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: In the unsettling ‘Midsommar,’ the nightmare unfolds in broad daylight," 3 July 2019 There was almost no political posturing, just the exact words that the prosecutor and his team composed. Jeffrey Toobin, The New Yorker, "“It’s the End of My Presidency”: Movie Stars Channel Mueller," 1 July 2019 In the early 1960s Farnon moved to London and composed music over the next 20 years. Paul Grein, Billboard, "Dennis Farnon, Last Survivor of the Recording Academy's Five Founders, Dies at 95," 21 June 2019 The Mylar material composing the sail is just 4.5 microns thick, or about one-tenth as thick as a human hair. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "One legacy of Carl Sagan may take flight next week—a working solar sail," 20 June 2019 On Monday, Harris appeared composed and upbeat, answering mostly questions about his role in the artist collective. Matthias Gafni, SFChronicle.com, "Ghost Ship defendant Max Harris testifies: ‘There weren’t hard and fast rules’," 17 June 2019 BBC Radio 2’s 500 Words asks children aged 5-13 to put pen to paper and compose an original work of fiction using no more than 500 words. Victoria Murphy, Town & Country, "Camilla Shares Her Passion for Literacy with School Children at Windsor Castle," 14 June 2019 García began first by collecting décimas, New World oral poems and musical folk poems of Afro Descendants and others—some memorized, some composed on the spot—that follow a literary form dating back to colonial Spain. Charles David Kleymeyer, Smithsonian, "Meet Juan García Salazar, the Man Who Championed Black Identity in Ecuador," 14 June 2019 But that launched a career of composing more than 200 published choral works found in church-choir libraries across the land. Scott Cantrell, Dallas News, "Prolific church composer Jane Marshall inspired generations with her music," 6 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'compose.' 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 compose

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for compose

Middle English, from Anglo-French composer, from Latin componere (perfect indicative composui) — more at compound

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Statistics for compose

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for compose

The first known use of compose was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for compose

compose

verb

English Language Learners Definition of compose

: to come together to form or make (something)
: to create and write (a piece of music or writing)
: to practice the art of writing music

compose

verb
com·​pose | \ kəm-ˈpōz How to pronounce compose (audio) \
composed; composing

Kids Definition of compose

1 : to form by putting together compose a team
2 : to be the parts or materials of This cloth is composed of silk and wool.
3 : to create and write compose a song compose a letter
4 : to make calm : get under control Although the news is shocking, I'll try to compose myself.

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More from Merriam-Webster on compose

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with compose

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for compose

Spanish Central: Translation of compose

Nglish: Translation of compose for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of compose for Arabic Speakers

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