take shape

idiomatic phrase

: to assume a definite or distinctive form : to develop and become apparent or established
The plan is finally taking shape.
Edison's tireless work habits took shape during his childhood …Paul Gray
The proto-planetary fragments crashed together, coalesced by gravity, and crashed again into other fragments, until they gradually took shape as the planets we know today.M. Mitchell Waldrop
… the first half of the century, before the modern medical system took shape.Geoffrey Cowley

Examples of take shape in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web As an agreement began to take shape, CIA director William Burns met in Qatar with David Barnea, the head of the Mossad, and Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, the country's emir, on Nov. 9. Anna Schecter, NBC News, 24 Nov. 2023 An opportunity for something unprecedented began to take shape: the first direct dialogue between Israel and the P.L.O. and what would become their most sustained effort to reach a settlement. Emily Bazelon, New York Times, 20 Nov. 2023 Playoff setup The College Football Playoff field is beginning to take shape. J. Brady McCollough, Los Angeles Times, 12 Nov. 2023 The Madison Park building's future as housing began to take shape when The Brodsky Organization bought a stake in the building this week. Charna Flam, Peoplemag, 27 Oct. 2023 When Hong King first opened in 1963, the capital’s Chinatown — a few pedestrian-only blocks in the Centro Histórico — was just starting to take shape. Jorge Valencia Mariano Fernandez, New York Times, 14 Nov. 2023 While the terminal’s interior, which will include dozens of new food and beverage concessions and the airport’s first underground baggage system, has yet to take shape, substantial progress has been made. Lori Weisberg, San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 Nov. 2023 These businesses have been eager for the guidelines and guardrails that are finally starting to take shape. Paula Goldman, Foreign Affairs, 13 Nov. 2023 In addition to the Hyphen project, others are taking shape here, from plans to power tugboats with green hydrogen in Walvis Bay, to the construction of the Daures Green Hydrogen Village, a net-zero village powered by green hydrogen. Melanie Stetson Freeman, The Christian Science Monitor, 3 Nov. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'take shape.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1560, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of take shape was in 1560

Dictionary Entries Near take shape

Cite this Entry

“Take shape.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/take%20shape. Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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