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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. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for deform
Historical Examples
  • And if we are not, it is likely to give the soul such a wrenching as to deform it forever.

    The Book of Khalid Ameen Rihani
  • I have no wish to know anything which may deform life and mar its beauty.

    Quo Vadis Henryk Sienkiewicz
  • After two seasons, this rude dwelling does not deform the scene.

    Excursions and Poems

    Henry David Thoreau
  • In fact, they seem to block up the view, and to deform what they do not hide.

  • Rain does not deform the face of things everywhere as it does in a city.

    How to Observe Harriet Martineau
  • I told him, forcefully to deform nature thus could scarce be wholesome.

  • He is raised and swells, like a pimple, to be an eyesore and deform the place he holds.

  • It is clear, then, that whatever is contrary to these will generally degrade and deform it.

    On the Sublime Longinus
  • I told him forcefully to deform nature thus could scarce be wholesome.

  • There are blemishes, I confess, which deform in some degree the picture.

    The Man of Feeling Henry Mackenzie
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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