[ tawr-shuhn ]
/ ˈtɔr ʃən /
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the act of twisting.
the state of being twisted.
  1. the twisting of a body by two equal and opposite torques.
  2. the internal torque so produced.
  1. the degree of departure of a curve from a plane.
  2. a number measuring this.



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Origin of torsion

1375–1425; 1535–45 for def. 1; late Middle English torcion wringing one's bowels <Old French torsion<Late Latin torsiōn- (stem of torsiō) torment, equivalent to tors(us) twisted (see torse) + -iōn--ion


tor·sion·al, adjectivetor·sion·al·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for torsion

British Dictionary definitions for torsion

/ (ˈtɔːʃən) /


  1. the twisting of a part by application of equal and opposite torques at either end
  2. the condition of twist and shear stress produced by a torque on a part or component
the act of twisting or the state of being twisted

Derived forms of torsion

torsional, adjectivetorsionally, adverb

Word Origin for torsion

C15: from Old French, from medical Latin torsiō griping pains, from Latin torquēre to twist, torture
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

Medical definitions for torsion

[ tôrshən ]


A twisting or rotation of a part on its long axis.
Twisting of the cut end of an artery to arrest hemorrhage.
Ocular rotation around the anteroposterior axis.

Other words from torsion

torsion•al adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for torsion

[ tôrshən ]

The stress on an object when torque is applied to it.
A mathematical operation in geometry measuring how tightly a plane is twisted.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.