de·​form | \ di-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce deform (audio) , dē- \
deformed; deforming; deforms

Definition of deform

transitive verb

1 : to spoil the form of
2a : to spoil the looks of : disfigure a face deformed by bitterness
b : to mar the character of a marriage deformed by jealousy
3 : to alter the shape of by stress

intransitive verb

: to become misshapen or changed in shape

Other Words from deform

deformable \ di-​ˈfȯr-​mə-​bəl How to pronounce deform (audio) , dē-​ \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for deform

deform, distort, contort, warp means to mar or spoil by or as if by twisting. deform may imply a change of shape through stress, injury, or accident of growth. a face deformed by hatred distort and contort both imply a wrenching from the natural or normal, but contort suggests a more involved twisting and a more grotesque and painful result. the odd camera angle distorts the figure disease had contorted her body warp indicates an uneven shrinking that bends or twists out of a flat plane. warped floorboards

Examples of deform in a Sentence

The disease eventually deforms the bones. The disease eventually causes the bones to deform.
Recent Examples on the Web The conflict is on full display in black holes, which deform space so severely that gravity’s more fundamental, quantum nature cannot be ignored. Quanta Magazine, 20 Apr. 2022 According to Viswanathan, some rechargeable batteries have hard metal shells that resist the buildup of internal pressure and don’t visibly deform very much. Washington Post, 18 Apr. 2022 The XT Extreme’s air cells deform independently, allowing the four-inch-thick pad to mold around your body. Ryan Stuart, Outside Online, 10 May 2021 The thicker, stronger carcass of an LT tire, inflated to a higher pressure, will deform less over small bumps than a P/Euro-metric one, transmitting those movements to the suspension. Wes Siler, Outside Online, 6 Apr. 2021 That is, inhabit the forms and then deform everything that doesn’t contain us entirely, that can’t in any way contain us. Elena Ferrante, Harper’s Magazine , 16 Feb. 2022 And the ground began to deform, likely due to flows of magma. Christopher Intagliata, Scientific American, 20 Dec. 2021 Research suggests that stimulating muscles, which then put force on bones and deform them slightly, encourages those bones to stay strong. Sarah Scoles, Wired, 9 Nov. 2021 In contrast, a train’s steel wheels deform very little, which means that only a small patch of the wheel – an area about the size of a five pence piece or a dime – actually makes contact with the rail. Laurie Winkless, Forbes, 27 Oct. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of deform

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

History and Etymology for deform

Middle English, from Anglo-French or Latin; Anglo-French desfurmer, from Latin deformare, from de- + formare to form, from forma form

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Time Traveler for deform

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

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Last Updated

5 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Deform.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for deform


de·​form | \ di-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce deform (audio) \
deformed; deforming

Kids Definition of deform

: to spoil the form or the natural appearance of

More from Merriam-Webster on deform

Nglish: Translation of deform for Spanish Speakers


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