re volution


an overthrow or repudiation and the thorough replacement of an established government or political system by the people governed.
Sociology. a radical and pervasive change in society and the social structure, especially one made suddenly and often accompanied by violence. Compare social evolution.
a sudden, complete or marked change in something: the present revolution in church architecture.
a procedure or course, as if in a circuit, back to a starting point.
a single turn of this kind.
a turning round or rotating, as on an axis.
a moving in a circular or curving course, as about a central point.
a single cycle in such a course.
(not in technical use) rotation ( def 2 ).
the orbiting of one heavenly body around another.
a single course of such movement.
a round or cycle of events in time or a recurring period of time.
Geology. a time of worldwide orogeny and mountain-building.

1350–1400; Middle English revolucion < Late Latin revolūtiōn- (stem of revolūtiō), equivalent to revolūt(us) (see revolute) + -iōn- -ion

antirevolution, adjective
nonrevolution, noun
postrevolution, adjective
prorevolution, adjective
semirevolution, noun

rebellion, revolt, revolution.

5. cycle, circuit, round, rotation. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
revolution (ˌrɛvəˈluːʃən)
1.  the overthrow or repudiation of a regime or political system by the governed
2.  (in Marxist theory) the violent and historically necessary transition from one system of production in a society to the next, as from feudalism to capitalism
3.  a far-reaching and drastic change, esp in ideas, methods, etc
4.  a.  movement in or as if in a circle
 b.  one complete turn in such a circle: a turntable rotating at 33 revolutions per minute
5.  a.  Compare rotation the orbital motion of one body, such as a planet or satellite, around another
 b.  one complete turn in such motion
6.  a cycle of successive events or changes
7.  obsolete geology a profound change in conditions over a large part of the earth's surface, esp one characterized by mountain building: an orogenic revolution
[C14: via Old French from Late Latin revolūtiō, from Latin revolvere to revolve]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

late 14c., originally of celestial bodies, from O.Fr. revolution, from L.L. revolutionem (nom. revolutio) "a revolving," from L. revolutus, pp. of revolvere "turn, roll back" (see revolve). General sense of "instance of great change in affairs" is recorded from mid-15c.
Political meaning first recorded c.1600, derived from French, and was especially applied to the expulsion of the Stuart dynasty under James II in 1688 and transfer of sovereignty to William and Mary. Revolutionary as a noun is first attested 1850, from the adjective. Revolutionize "to change a thing completely and fundamentally" is first recorded 1799.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
revolution   (rěv'ə-l'shən)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. The motion of an object around a point, especially around another object or a center of mass.

  2. A single complete cycle of such motion.

Our Living Language  : In everyday speech revolution and rotation are often used as synonyms, but in science they are not synonyms and have distinct meanings. The difference between the two terms lies in the location of the central axis that the object turns about. If the axis is outside the body itself—that is, if the object is orbiting about another object—then one complete orbit is called a revolution. But if the object is turning about an axis that passes through itself, then one complete cycle is called a rotation. This difference is often summed up in the statement "Earth rotates on its axis and revolves around the Sun."
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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