verb (used with object)

to make copies of, as with carbon paper.

Origin of manifold

before 1000; Middle English; Old English manigf(e)ald (adj.). See many, -fold
Related formsman·i·fold·ly, adverbman·i·fold·ness, noun

Synonyms for manifold

1. various, multitudinous. See many. 2. varied, divers, multifarious.

Antonyms for manifold Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for manifold

Contemporary Examples of manifold

Historical Examples of manifold

  • And you think that with all your manifold advantages you're a happier man than me.

    The Slave Of The Lamp

    Henry Seton Merriman

  • She answered me as follows: 'There is poetry, which, as you know, is complex and manifold.

  • We mean the integrity of impression made by manifold natural objects.


    Ralph Waldo Emerson

  • The difficulties of introducing a sportsman-like ideal have been manifold.

  • His weaknesses were manifold, but, on the whole, of a negative kind.

British Dictionary definitions for manifold


adjective formal

of several different kinds; multiplemanifold reasons
having many different forms, features, or elementsmanifold breeds of dog


something having many varied parts, forms, or features
a copy of a page, book, etc
a chamber or pipe with a number of inlets or outlets used to collect or distribute a fluid. In an internal-combustion engine the inlet manifold carries the vaporized fuel from the carburettor to the inlet ports and the exhaust manifold carries the exhaust gases away
  1. a collection of objects or a set
  2. a topological space having specific properties
(in the philosophy of Kant) the totality of the separate elements of sensation which are then organized by the active mind and conceptualized as a perception of an external object


(tr) to duplicate (a page, book, etc)
to make manifold; multiply
Derived Formsmanifolder, nounmanifoldly, adverbmanifoldness, noun

Word Origin for manifold

Old English manigfeald. See many, -fold
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 manifold

Old English monigfald (Anglian), manigfeald (West Saxon), "various, varied in appearance, complicated; numerous, abundant," from manig (see many) + -feald (see -fold). A common Germanic compound (cf. Old Frisian manichfald, Middle Dutch menichvout, German mannigfalt, Swedish mångfalt, Gothic managfalþs), perhaps a loan-translation of Latin multiplex (see multiply). Retains the original pronunciation of many. Old English also had a verbal form, manigfealdian "to multiply, abound, increase, extend."


Old English manigfealdlic "in various ways, manifoldly," from the source of manifold (adj.).


in mechanical sense, first as "pipe or chamber with several outlets," 1884, see manifold (adj.); originally as manifold pipe (1857), with reference to a type of musical instrument mentioned in the Old Testament.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

manifold in Science



A topological space or surface.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.