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[dih-fawrm] /dɪˈfɔrm/
verb (used with object)
to mar the natural form or shape of; put out of shape; disfigure:
In cases where the drug was taken during pregnancy, its effects deformed the infants.
to make ugly, ungraceful, or displeasing; mar the beauty of; spoil:
The trees had been completely deformed by the force of the wind.
to change the form of; transform.
Geology, Mechanics. to subject to deformation:
The metal was deformed under stress.
verb (used without object)
to undergo deformation.
Origin of deform1
1350-1400; Middle English deformen < Latin dēfōrmāre, equivalent to dē- de- + fōrmāre to form
Related forms
deformable, adjective
deformability, noun
deformative, adjective
deformer, noun
undeformable, adjective
1. misshape. See mar. 2. ruin.


[dih-fawrm] /dɪˈfɔrm/
adjective, Archaic.
deformed; ugly.
1350-1400; Middle English defo(u)rme < Latin dēformis, equivalent to dē- de- + -formis -form Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for deform
  • Different kinds of metals and other materials typically deform because of defects in the way their molecules are put together.
  • On the other hand, government incentives gradually shape a culture, and can deform it too.
  • The pressure changes deform the overlying rocks, possibly jarring certain faults into action.
  • She wants to say them, but she wants to deform them so they won't be heard because they're so hideous.
  • The first victory of good taste is over the bombast and conceits which deform such times as these.
  • Since the new material is stiff, it takes a significant amount of energy to deform it.
  • To form diamond, the hexagonal rings in graphite first have to deform.
  • The cribs' drop-side plastic hardware can break, deform, or parts can become missing.
  • But my biggest complaint is how they deform the skin on my hands.
  • It is clearly distinct from the sphere because you cannot deform a torus into a sphere no matter how you twist it.
British Dictionary definitions for deform


to make or become misshapen or distorted
(transitive) to mar the beauty of; disfigure
(transitive) to subject or be subjected to a stress that causes a change of dimensions
Derived Forms
deformable, adjective
deformability, noun
deformer, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin dēformāre, from de- + forma shape, beauty
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for deform

c.1400, "to disfigure," from Old French deformer (13c.), from Latin deformare "put out of shape, disfigure," from de- (see de-) + formare (see form (v.)). Related: Deformed; deforming.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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