c.1300, from O.Fr. transfigurer
(12c.), from L. transfigurare
"change the shape of," from trans-
"across" + figurare
"to form, fashion," from figura
"form, shape" (see figure
(late 14c.) originally was "the change in appearance of Christ before his disciples" (Matt. xvii:2; Mark ix:2,3). The non-Christian sense is first recorded 1540s.