- the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc.: social reform; spelling reform.
- an instance of this.
- the amendment of conduct, belief, etc.
- to change to a better state, form, etc.; improve by alteration, substitution, abolition, etc.
- to cause (a person) to abandon wrong or evil ways of life or conduct.
- to put an end to (abuses, disorders, etc.).
- Chemistry. to subject to the process of reforming, as in refining petroleum.
- to abandon evil conduct or error: The drunkard promised to reform.
- (initial capital letter) of, relating to, or characteristic of Reform Jews or Reform Judaism: a Reform rabbi.
Origin of reform
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- to form again.
Origin of re-form
Examples from the Web for reform
Sorkin may not have won his fight, ostensibly to reform the news.'The Newsroom' Ended As It Began: Weird, Controversial, and Noble
December 15, 2014
However, new gold mines are becoming conflict-free as a result of the reform efforts.Aaron Rodgers Takes Aim at Congo’s ‘Blood Minerals’ War
December 3, 2014
Backers of reform certainly hope so and believe it might have been too optimistic to expect change this year.
But Lomax can heave a small sigh of relief, at least for now: Legislative reform to the 1033 program will not happen in 2014.
What were your thoughts on the NSA reform bill that died in the Senate?Laura Poitras on Snowden's Unrevealed Secrets
December 1, 2014
This was in part owing to the readjustment of seats according to the Reform Bill.
With the year 1869 Mr. Gladstone entered upon a great period of Reform.
He told her that certain responsibilities were hers, but that she could not reform the world.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
Many were the efforts to reform the abuses which crept into the monastic houses.English Villages
P. H. Ditchfield
The book was timely and told efficiently on the reform in this country.Cleveland Past and Present
- (tr) to improve (an existing institution, law, practice, etc) by alteration or correction of abuses
- to give up or cause to give up a reprehensible habit or immoral way of life
- chem to change the molecular structure of (a hydrocarbon) to make it suitable for use as petrol by heat, pressure, and the action of catalysts
- an improvement or change for the better, esp as a result of correction of legal or political abuses or malpractices
- a principle, campaign, or measure aimed at achieving such change
- improvement of morals or behaviour, esp by giving up some vice
- to form anew
Word Origin and History for reform
c.1300, "to convert into another and better form," from Old French reformer "rebuild, reconstruct, recreate" (12c.), from Latin reformare "to form again, change, transform, alter," from re- "again" (see re-) + formare "to form" (see form (n.)). Intransitive sense from 1580s.
Meaning "to bring (a person) away from an evil course of life" is recorded from early 15c.; of governments, institutions, etc., from early 15c. Related: Reformed; reforming. Reformed churches (1580s) usually are Calvinist as opposed to Lutheran. Reformed Judaism (1843) is a movement initiated in Germany by Moses Mendelssohn (1729-1786). Reform school is attested from 1859.
"any proceeding which brings back a better order of things," 1660s, from reform (v.) and in some uses from French réforme. As a branch of Judaism from 1843.