reflect

verb
re·​flect | \ ri-ˈflekt \
reflected; reflecting; reflects

Definition of reflect

transitive verb

1 archaic : to turn into or away from a course : deflect
2 : to prevent passage of and cause to change direction a mirror reflects light
3 : to bend or fold back
4 : to give back or exhibit as an image, likeness, or outline : mirror the clouds were reflected in the water
5 : to bring or cast as a result his attitude reflects little credit on his judgment
6 : to make manifest or apparent : show the painting reflects his artistic vision the pulse reflects the condition of the heart

intransitive verb

1 : to throw back light or sound
2a : to think quietly and calmly
b : to express a thought or opinion resulting from reflection
3a : to tend to bring reproach or discredit an investigation that reflects on all the members of the department
b : to bring about a specified appearance or characterization an act which reflects well on her
c : to have a bearing or influence

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Synonyms for reflect

Synonyms

image, mirror

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Choose the Right Synonym for reflect

think, cogitate, reflect, reason, speculate, deliberate mean to use one's powers of conception, judgment, or inference. think is general and may apply to any mental activity, but used alone often suggests attainment of clear ideas or conclusions. teaches students how to think cogitate implies deep or intent thinking. cogitated on the mysteries of nature reflect suggests unhurried consideration of something recalled to the mind. reflecting on fifty years of married life reason stresses consecutive logical thinking. able to reason brilliantly in debate speculate implies reasoning about things theoretical or problematic. speculated on the fate of the lost explorers deliberate suggests slow or careful reasoning before forming an opinion or reaching a conclusion or decision. the jury deliberated for five hours

Examples of reflect in a Sentence

The old church is reflected in the glass exterior of the skyscraper. Her book clearly reflects her beliefs. Where you learned a language is reflected in your accent.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Each day we’re faced with seemingly humdrum decisions that reflect subconscious biases — and shape our personal, professional, and financial futures. Tess Garcia, Teen Vogue, "Glow Recipe Announced the Upcoming Launch of a Target Line Called Sweet Chef," 27 Dec. 2018 Where to Eat Izakaya, in De Pijp, is very much the flavor of the month, but there are plenty of humbler establishments that reflect Amsterdam’s Eastern inheritance. Steve King, Condé Nast Traveler, "Why We Keep Going Back to Amsterdam," 24 Dec. 2018 Active sonar broadcasts sound waves through the ocean that reflect off underwater objects, ideally detecting enemy submarines. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Navy Is Limiting Noisier Activities to Protect an Endangered Whale," 15 Nov. 2018 Lambert not only has her own line of wine that reflects her Southern spirit, the singer also designed a shoe line and owns a housing good store. Sasha Savitsky, Fox News, "9 things you didn't know about Miranda Lambert," 28 Sep. 2018 And also things have changed in American politics that reflect on women in many ways. Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "Mika Brzezinski Isn't Afraid to Say What You're Thinking," 24 Sep. 2018 Correction: The Hawthorne tunnel's exit was corrected to Prairie and 120th St. and the reference to Musk spending $40 million on the Boring Company was corrected to reflect that the company itself has spent $40 million. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Ars takes a first tour of the length of The Boring Company’s test tunnel," 19 Dec. 2018 The article has been updated to reflect this change. Ashley Carman, The Verge, "T-Mobile now supports eSIM for iOS," 17 Dec. 2018 The top half of the outfit featured Katrantzou's signature graphic patterns, which, according to the designer, are meant to reflect each country in Africa. Ana Colón, Glamour, "Beyoncé's Global Citizen Festival 2018 Looks Were Full of Hidden Details," 3 Dec. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for reflect

Middle English, from Latin reflectere to bend back, from re- + flectere to bend

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Statistics for reflect

Last Updated

7 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for reflect

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

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More Definitions for reflect

reflect

verb

English Language Learners Definition of reflect

of light, sound, etc. : to move in one direction, hit a surface, and then quickly move in a different and usually opposite direction

: to show the image of (something) on a surface

: to show (something) : to make (something) known

reflect

verb
re·​flect | \ ri-ˈflekt \
reflected; reflecting

Kids Definition of reflect

1 : to bend or throw back (waves of light, sound, or heat) A polished surface reflects light.
2 : to give back an image or likeness of in the manner of a mirror The clouds were reflected in the water.
3 : to make known The book reflects her beliefs.
4 : to cause to be thought of in a specified way or in a bad way Your poor behavior reflects on the whole class.
5 : to think seriously and carefully about I reflected on the problem.

reflect

transitive verb
re·​flect | \ ri-ˈflekt \

Medical Definition of reflect

1 : to bend or fold back : impart a backward curve, bend, or fold to
2 : to push or lay aside (as tissue or an organ) during surgery in order to gain access to the part to be operated on the pleura were reflected and later closed over the stump

intransitive verb

: to throw back light or sound : return rays, beams, or waves

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More from Merriam-Webster on reflect

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with reflect

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for reflect

Spanish Central: Translation of reflect

Nglish: Translation of reflect for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of reflect for Arabic Speakers

Comments on reflect

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