Idioms

    ahead of/behindthe curve, at the forefront of (or lagging behind) recent developments, trends, etc.
    throw (someone) a curve,
    1. to take (someone) by surprise, especially in a negative way.
    2. to mislead or deceive.

Origin of curve

1565–75; (< Middle French) < Latin curvus crooked, bent, curved

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for throw a curve

curve

/ (kɜːv) /

noun


verb

to take or cause to take the shape or path of a curve; bend

Related forms

Related adjective: sinuous

Derived Forms

curvedly (ˈkɜːvɪdlɪ), adverbcurvedness, nouncurvy, adjective

Word Origin for curve

C15: from Latin curvāre to bend, from curvus crooked
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

Medicine definitions for throw a curve

curve

[ kûrv ]

n.

A line or surface that deviates from straightness in a smooth, continuous fashion.
Something characterized by such a line or surface, especially a rounded line or contour of the human body.
A curved line representing variations in data on a graph.

v.

To move in or take the shape of a curve.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for throw a curve

curve

[ kûrv ]

A line or surface that bends in a smooth, continuous way without sharp angles.
The graph of a function on a coordinate plane. In this technical sense, straight lines, circles, and waves are all curves.

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

Idioms and Phrases with throw a curve (1 of 2)

throw a curve

Surprise or outwit someone, as in They threw me a curve when they said that our department would be combined with yours. This colloquial term comes from baseball, where a pitcher tries to fool the batter by using a curve ball, which is thrown with sufficient spin to make it veer from its expected path. The term was transferred to other kinds of surprise, not necessarily unpleasant, in the mid-1900s.


Idioms and Phrases with throw a curve (2 of 2)

curve

see throw a curve.


The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.