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reform

[ri-fawrm]
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noun
  1. the improvement or amendment of what is wrong, corrupt, unsatisfactory, etc.: social reform; spelling reform.
  2. an instance of this.
  3. the amendment of conduct, belief, etc.
verb (used with object)
  1. to change to a better state, form, etc.; improve by alteration, substitution, abolition, etc.
  2. to cause (a person) to abandon wrong or evil ways of life or conduct.
  3. to put an end to (abuses, disorders, etc.).
  4. Chemistry. to subject to the process of reforming, as in refining petroleum.
verb (used without object)
  1. to abandon evil conduct or error: The drunkard promised to reform.
adjective
  1. (initial capital letter) of, relating to, or characteristic of Reform Jews or Reform Judaism: a Reform rabbi.

Origin of reform

1300–50; (v.) Middle English reformen < Middle French reformer, Old French < Latin refōrmāre (see re-, form); (noun) partly derivative of the v., partly < French réforme
Related formsre·form·a·ble, adjectivere·form·a·bil·i·ty, re·form·a·ble·ness, nounre·form·a·tive, adjectivere·form·a·tive·ly, adverbre·form·a·tive·ness, nounre·form·ing·ly, adverban·ti·re·form, adjectivemis·re·form, verbpre·re·form, adjectivepro·re·form, adjectiveself-re·form, nounsu·per·re·form, noun, verb (used with object)un·re·form·a·ble, adjectiveun·re·form·a·tive, adjective
Can be confusedre-form reform

Synonyms

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1. correction, reformation, betterment, amelioration. 4. better, rectify, correct, amend, emend, ameliorate, repair, restore.

Antonyms

1. deterioration.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for reformative

Historical Examples

  • Its primary purpose is to aid in a reformative or educational process.

    The Holy Earth

    L. H. Bailey

  • The idealism of the eighteenth century was not reformative and humanistic, but revolutionary and humanitarian.

  • The moral hump is tolerated, even patronised in reformative institutions, but the physical hump, never!

    London's Underworld

    Thomas Holmes

  • Mr. Oman (Byzantine Empire, p. 145) takes the popular view as to the reformative effect of Christianity.

  • Therefore: reformative rgimes should function so as to free such prisoners of shackles forged by their lower selves.

    Criminal Types

    V. M. Masten


British Dictionary definitions for reformative

reform

verb
  1. (tr) to improve (an existing institution, law, practice, etc) by alteration or correction of abuses
  2. to give up or cause to give up a reprehensible habit or immoral way of life
  3. 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
noun
  1. an improvement or change for the better, esp as a result of correction of legal or political abuses or malpractices
  2. a principle, campaign, or measure aimed at achieving such change
  3. improvement of morals or behaviour, esp by giving up some vice
Derived Formsreformable, adjectivereformative, adjectivereformer, noun

Word Origin

C14: via Old French from Latin reformāre to form again
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

Word Origin and History for reformative

reform

v.

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.

reform

n.

"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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper