composition

noun
com·​po·​si·​tion | \ ˌkäm-pə-ˈzi-shən How to pronounce composition (audio) \

Definition of composition

1a : the act or process of composing specifically : arrangement into specific proportion or relation and especially into artistic form the painting's unique composition
b(1) : the arrangement of type for printing hand composition
(2) : the production of type or typographic characters (as in photocomposition) arranged for printing
2a : the manner in which something is composed
b : general makeup the changing ethnic composition of the city's population
c : the qualitative and quantitative makeup of a chemical compound the chemical composition of a polymer
3 : mutual settlement or agreement The two parties came to a composition.
4 : a product of mixing or combining various elements or ingredients a composition of rubber and cork
5 : an intellectual creation: such as
a : a piece of writing especially : a school exercise in the form of a brief essay wrote a composition on the role of the police in our society
b : a written piece of music especially of considerable size and complexity Her composition for piano and flute was played at the recital.
6 : the quality or state of being compound
7 : the operation of forming a composite function also : composite function

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Other Words from composition

compositional \ ˌkäm-​pə-​ˈzish-​nəl How to pronounce compositional (audio) , -​ˈzi-​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
compositionally adverb

Synonyms for composition

Synonyms

number, opus, piece, work

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Examples of composition in a Sentence

the changing composition of the country's population the composition of a chemical compound The teacher reminded us to hand in our compositions at the end of class.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Our model of a moon-forming synestia can be tested by improving its chemical and isotopic predictions for lunar composition. Simon J. Lock, Scientific American, "When Earth and the Moon Were One," 2 July 2019 Course architect/designer: Arnold Palmer Field composition: There are 144 players representing 34 countries. Jason Hoffman, Cincinnati.com, "TPC River's Bend hosting one-of-a-kind tournament for LPGA's Symetra Tour," 28 June 2019 But the best covers of that time period came from R&B artists, who recognized that the Beatles’ compositions were indebted to their own genre. Andrew R. Chow, Time, "Yesterday’s Beatles Covers Don’t Come Together. Here’s How the Movie Could Have Done Them Justice," 28 June 2019 Because the approach of the teams involved at Sunday's 6 p.m. start of this offseason's space race could ultimately impact the Heat's approach to roster composition both this summer and during ensuing offseasons. Ira Winderman, sun-sentinel.com, "Heat spectators to free agency, but not a disinterested party," 27 June 2019 Through both projects Foster has proven to be a thoughtful lyricist, with a smooth flow and an adept ear for composition. Ben Baskin, SI.com, "The Best Athlete-Turned-Rapper? It’s Arian Foster. (Just Ask Him)," 26 June 2019 But their impact might be a drop in the bucket, given the size and composition of the tech industry. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "The Problem With Diversity in Computing," 25 June 2019 The concert has musical arrangements taken from the HBO drama series, including compositions from the final season. James Hibberd, EW.com, "Game of Thrones benefit concert coming to George R.R. Martin's hometown," 24 June 2019 And the bid used analyses of 800 kilograms of rock samples dredged up from the sea floor, whose composition can distinguish continental from ocean crust. Richard Kemeny, Science | AAAS, "As countries battle for control of North Pole, science is the ultimate winner," 20 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for composition

Middle English composicioun, from Anglo-French composicion, from Latin composition-, compositio, from componere — see compose

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Statistics for composition

Last Updated

10 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for composition

The first known use of composition was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for composition

composition

noun

English Language Learners Definition of composition

: the way in which something is put together or arranged : the combination of parts or elements that make up something
: a piece of writing especially : a brief essay written as a school assignment
: a written piece of music and especially one that is very long or complex

composition

noun
com·​po·​si·​tion | \ ˌkäm-pə-ˈzi-shən How to pronounce composition (audio) \

Kids Definition of composition

1 : a short piece of writing done as a school exercise
2 : the act of writing words or music
3 : the manner in which the parts of a thing are put together : makeup, constitution The president discussed the population's changing composition. Each rock has a slightly different composition.
4 : a literary, musical, or artistic production

composition

noun
com·​po·​si·​tion

Legal Definition of composition

: an agreement between an insolvent debtor and several creditors whereby partial payment of the debts discharges in full the original obligations — compare accord sense 3, compromise

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