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

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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 Dallas has altered their practice to bring adaption to their team philosophy, and not just team compositions and styles. Sean Collins, Dallas News, "Dallas Fuel using ‘much needed’ mid-season break as a reset before tackling the rest of the season," 23 May 2020 Pawlak is taking an unusually heavy AP load: physics, biology, statistics, and English literature and composition. Alec Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "2020 AP tests are just essay questions, and Wisconsin students and teachers aren't sure how to prepare," 11 May 2020 That amounts to heresy for a modernist, which Lange intuitively was in formal discipline, with her masterly compositions and eloquent gradations of light. Peter Schjeldahl, The New Yorker, "Dorothea Lange and Félix Fénéon at MOMA, and Online," 11 May 2020 Hayes is taking two exams this year, AP government and AP literature and composition. Jill Tucker, SFChronicle.com, "Students to take Advanced Placement tests online at home, with mixed feelings," 10 May 2020 Discriminatory attitudes drown workforce composition and opportunity for everyone. Caroline Cicero, The Conversation, "Out with the old: Coronavirus highlights why we need new names for aging," 6 May 2020 Also, there's a lot of merit to the amazing colorist Mat Lopes who always brings his balance and clarity to the composition and the wise lettering from Simon Bowland, placing the text in order to help the flow in between scenes. Christian Holub, EW.com, "The Dreaming creators say goodbye to Neil Gaiman's fantasy world with mind-blowing art," 28 Apr. 2020 Matisse’s idea of composition and space is like a wildflower garden, a long gaze at the night sky, a changing cloud. Kyle Chayka, The New Republic, "When Art Becomes Self-Help," 24 Apr. 2020 This includes clearly explained and user-friendly tests for soil composition and pH. Recipes for a huge variety of plant mixes are offered based on what the gardener finds in soil testing. Sally Peterson, oregonlive, "Book review: 'Garden Alchemy’ has 80 recipes, simple at-home soil tests," 15 Apr. 2020

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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Time Traveler for composition

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for composition

Last Updated

28 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Composition.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/composition. Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for composition

composition

noun
How to pronounce composition (audio)

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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