an act or instance of distorting.
the state of being distorted or the relative degree or amount by which something is distorted or distorts.
anything that is distorted, as a sound, image, fact, etc.
Optics. an aberration of a lens or system of lenses in which the magnification of the object varies with the lateral distance from the axis of the lens.

1575–85; < Latin distortiōn- (stem of distortiō). See distort, -ion

distortional, distortionary, adjective
nondistortion, noun
overdistortion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To distortional
World English Dictionary
distortion (dɪˈstɔːʃən)
1.  the act or an instance of distorting or the state of being distorted
2.  something that is distorted
3.  an aberration of a lens or optical system in which the magnification varies with the lateral distance from the axis
4.  electronics
 a.  an undesired change in the shape of an electromagnetic wave or signal
 b.  the result of such a change in waveform, esp a loss of clarity in radio reception or sound reproduction
5.  psychol a change in perception so that it does not correspond to reality
6.  psychoanal the disguising of the meaning of unconscious thoughts so that they may appear in consciousness, e.g. in dreams

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

1580s, "action of distorting," from L. distortionem, noun of action from distorquere (see distort). Figurative use (of words, etc.) from 1640s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

distortion dis·tor·tion (dĭ-stôr'shən)

  1. A twisting out of normal shape or form.

  2. A psychological defense mechanism that helps to repress or disguise unacceptable thoughts.

  3. Parataxic distortion.

dis·tor'tion·al or dis·tor'tion·ar'y adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature