a rolled up or coiled condition.
a rolling or coiling together.
a turn of anything coiled; whorl.
Anatomy. one of the sinuous folds or ridges of the surface of the brain.

Origin of convolution

1535–45; < Latin convolūt- (see convolute) + -ion
Related formscon·vo·lu·tion·al, con·vo·lu·tion·ar·y [kon-vuh-loo-shuh-ner-ee] /ˌkɒn vəˈlu ʃəˌnɛr i/, adjective

Synonyms for convolution Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for convolutions

Contemporary Examples of convolutions

Historical Examples of convolutions

  • He was somehow sensible of its convolutions as he stood against the wall and strained his eyes into the dusk.

    The Phantoms Of The Foot-Bridge

    Charles Egbert Craddock (AKA Mary Noailles Murfree)

  • Roots of plants become scaly, contorted, and lie in convolutions like the coils of a serpent.


    Harriet Beecher Stowe

  • Her hair, in its dips and convolutions, was altogether a puzzle.

    Free Air

    Sinclair Lewis

  • He travelled a road that faithfully followed the convolutions of the levee, running along its base, but whither he knew not.

  • He followed their convolutions miserably, walking as if his eyes were shut.

British Dictionary definitions for convolutions



a twisting together; a turn, twist, or coil
an intricate, involved, or confused matter or condition
Also called: gyrus any of the numerous convex folds or ridges of the surface of the brain
Derived Formsconvolutional or convolutionary, adjective
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 convolutions



1540s, from Latin convolutus, past participle of convolvere "to roll together," from com- "together" (see com-) + volvere "to roll" (see volvox).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for convolutions




A form or part that is folded or coiled.
One of the convex folds of the surface of the brain.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.