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[dih-stawrt] /dɪˈstɔrt/
verb (used with object)
to twist awry or out of shape; make crooked or deformed:
Arthritis had distorted his fingers.
to give a false, perverted, or disproportionate meaning to; misrepresent:
to distort the facts.
Electronics. to reproduce or amplify (a signal) inaccurately by changing the frequencies or unequally changing the delay or amplitude of the components of the output wave.
Origin of distort
1580-90; < Latin distortus (past participle of distorquēre to distort), equivalent to dis- dis-1 + tor(qu)- (stem of torquēre to twist) + -tus past participle suffix
Related forms
distorter, noun
distortive, adjective
nondistorting, adjective
nondistortingly, adverb
nondistortive, adjective
overdistort, verb (used with object)
undistorting, adjective
2. pervert, misconstrue, twist, falsify, misstate. See misrepresent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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verb (transitive)
(often passive) to twist or pull out of shape; make bent or misshapen; contort; deform
to alter or misrepresent (facts, motives, etc)
(electronics) to reproduce or amplify (a signal) inaccurately, changing the shape of the waveform
Derived Forms
distorted, adjective
distortedly, adverb
distortedness, noun
distorter, noun
distortive, adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Latin distortus misshapen, from distorquēre to turn different ways, from dis-1 + torquēre to twist
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 distortive



1580s, from Latin distortus, past participle of distorquere "to twist different ways, distort," from dis- "completely" + torquere "to twist" (see thwart). Related: Distorted; distorting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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