[kur-vuh-cher, -choo r]


the act of curving or the state of being curved.
a curved condition, often abnormal: curvature of the spine.
the degree of curving of a line or surface.
  1. (at a point on a curve) the derivative of the inclination of the tangent with respect to arc length.
  2. the absolute value of this derivative.
something curved.

Origin of curvature

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin curvātūra, equivalent to curvāt(us) past participle of curvāre to bend, curve + -ūra -ure. See -ate1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for curvature

curve, shape, arc, bend, bow, arch, round, incurvation, deflection, flexure, curving, arching

Examples from the Web for curvature

Contemporary Examples of curvature

Historical Examples of curvature

British Dictionary definitions for curvature



something curved or a curved part of a thing
any normal or abnormal curving of a bodily partcurvature of the spine
geometry the change in inclination of a tangent to a curve over unit length of arc. For a circle or sphere it is the reciprocal of the radiusSee also radius of curvature, centre of curvature
the act of curving or the state or degree of being curved or bent
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 curvature

1660s, from Latin curvatura "a bending," from curvatus, past participle of curvare "to bend" (see curve (v.)). In non-Euclidian geometry, from 1873.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

curvature in Medicine




A curving or bending, especially an abnormal one.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.