- to twist awry or out of shape; make crooked or deformed: Arthritis had distorted his fingers.
- to give a false, perverted, or disproportionate meaning to; misrepresent: to distort the facts.
- Electronics. to reproduce or amplify (a signal) inaccurately by changing the frequencies or unequally changing the delay or amplitude of the components of the output wave.
Origin of distort
1580–90; < Latin distortus (past participle of distorquēre to distort), equivalent to dis- dis-1 + tor(qu)- (stem of torquēre to twist) + -tus past participle suffix
SynonymsSee more synonyms for distort on Thesaurus.com
2. pervert, misconstrue, twist, falsify, misstate. See misrepresent.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for distortive
But, in the distortive movement, the mass will also gain energy in other forms.The Energy System of Matter
- (often passive) to twist or pull out of shape; make bent or misshapen; contort; deform
- to alter or misrepresent (facts, motives, etc)
- electronics to reproduce or amplify (a signal) inaccurately, changing the shape of the waveform
C16: from Latin distortus misshapen, from distorquēre to turn different ways, from dis- 1 + torquēre to twist
Word Origin and History for distortive
1580s, from Latin distortus, past participle of distorquere "to twist different ways, distort," from dis- "completely" + torquere "to twist" (see thwart). Related: Distorted; distorting.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper