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trans·​form tran(t)s-ˈfȯrm How to pronounce transform (audio)
transformed; transforming; transforms

transitive verb

: to change in composition or structure
: to change the outward form or appearance of
: to change in character or condition : convert
: to subject to mathematical transformation
: to cause (a cell) to undergo genetic transformation
transformable adjective


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trans·​form ˈtran(t)s-ˌfȯrm How to pronounce transform (audio)
: a mathematical element obtained from another by transformation
: a linguistic structure (such as a sentence) produced by means of a transformation
"the duckling is killed by the farmer" is a transform of "the farmer kills the duckling"
Choose the Right Synonym for transform

transform, metamorphose, transmute, convert, transmogrify, transfigure mean to change a thing into a different thing.

transform implies a major change in form, nature, or function.

transformed a small company into a corporate giant

metamorphose suggests an abrupt or startling change induced by or as if by magic or a supernatural power.

awkward girls metamorphosed into graceful ballerinas

transmute implies transforming into a higher element or thing.

attempted to transmute lead into gold

convert implies a change fitting something for a new or different use or function.

converted the study into a nursery

transmogrify suggests a strange or preposterous metamorphosis.

a story in which a frog is transmogrified into a prince

transfigure implies a change that exalts or glorifies.

joy transfigured her face

Examples of transform in a Sentence

Verb A little creativity can transform an ordinary meal into a special event. The old factory has been transformed into an art gallery.
Recent Examples on the Web
But software that puts powerful information in the hands of health care workers arguably has the greatest potential for transforming lives right now. Eleanor Pringle, Fortune, 21 June 2024 Walt Disney Studios Park Walt Disney Studios Park will be transformed entirely into Disney Adventure World — construction kicked off in April. Elizabeth Rhodes, Travel + Leisure, 21 June 2024 To create the vision, her signature red curls were transformed by hairstylist Dom Forletta into a bleach blonde mane (a wig or hers, only time will tell), her eyebrows blocked, and feathers strategically placed by makeup wizard Andrew Dahling to frame her eyes. Margaux Anbouba, Vogue, 21 June 2024 Then, in just a few steps, Pinkley transforms himself from runt of the litter to a loose caricature of an officer and a gentleman. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 21 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for transform 

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

Word History



Middle English, from Middle French transformer, from Latin transformare, from trans- + formare to form, from forma form

First Known Use


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


1853, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of transform was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near transform

Cite this Entry

“Transform.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: to change completely in composition, structure, or character
: to change in outward appearance
: to substitute for or change (a mathematical expression) into another using a mathematical rule

Medical Definition


transitive verb
trans·​form tran(t)s-ˈfȯ(ə)rm How to pronounce transform (audio)
: to cause to change: as
: to change (a current) in potential (as from high voltage to low) or in type (as from alternating to direct)
: to cause (a cell) to undergo genetic transformation

More from Merriam-Webster on transform

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