[uh-lahyn-muh nt]
  1. an adjustment to a line; arrangement in a straight line.
  2. the line or lines so formed.
  3. the proper adjustment of the components of an electronic circuit, machine, etc., for coordinated functioning: The front wheels of the car are out of alignment.
  4. a state of agreement or cooperation among persons, groups, nations, etc., with a common cause or viewpoint.
  5. a ground plan of a railroad or highway.
  6. Archaeology. a line or an arrangement of parallel or converging lines of upright stones or menhirs.
Also a·line·ment.

Origin of alignment

1780–90; align + -ment; replacing earlier alignement < French
Related formsnon·a·line·ment, nounre·a·lign·ment, nounself-a·lign·ment, nounself-a·line·ment, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for re-alignment

Contemporary Examples of re-alignment

Historical Examples of re-alignment

  • There might even be a re-alignment of parties with some sort of socialism in control of189 one of them.

    The Plum Tree

    David Graham Phillips

  • For the moment a re-alignment of parties on geographical lines seemed imminent.

    Stephen A. Douglas

    Allen Johnson

  • While this re-alignment of parties was in progress, the presidential year drew on apace.

    Stephen A. Douglas

    Allen Johnson

British Dictionary definitions for re-alignment


  1. arrangement in a straight line
  2. the line or lines formed in this manner
  3. alliance or union with a party, cause, etc
  4. proper or desirable coordination or relation of components
  5. a ground plan of a railway, motor road, etc
  6. archaeol an arrangement of one or more ancient rows of standing stones, of uncertain significance
  7. psychol integration or harmonization of aims, practices, etc within a group
  8. psychol identification with or matching of the behaviour, thoughts, etc of another person
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 re-alignment

also realignment, 1850, from re- + alignment.



1790, "arrangement in a line," from French alignement, from aligner (see align). Political sense is from 1933.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper