[form] n [ME forme, fr. OF, fr. L forma form, beauty] (13c) 1 a: the shape and structure of something as distinguished from its material b: a body (as of a person) esp. in its external appearance or as distinguished from the face: figure c archaic: beauty
2: the essential nature of a thing as distinguished from its matter: as a: idea 1a b: the component of a thing that determines its kind 3 a: established method of expression or proceeding: procedure according to rule or rote b: a prescribed and set order of words: formula "the ~ of the marriage service"
4: a printed or typed document with blank spaces for insertion of required or requested information "tax ~s"
5. a (1): conduct regulated by extraneous controls (as of custom or etiquette): ceremony (2): show without substance b: manner or conduct as tested by a prescribed or accepted standard "rudeness is simply bad ~" c: manner or style of performing or accomplishing according to recognized standards of technique "a strong swimmer but weak on ~"
6. a: the resting place or nest of a hare b: a long seat: bench
7. a: a supporting frame model of the human figure or part (as the torso) of the human figure usu. used for displaying apparel b: a proportioned and often adjustable model for fitting clothes c: a mold in which concrete is placed to set 8: the printing type or other matter arranged and secured in a chase ready for printing
9. a: one of the different modes of existence, action, or manifestation of a particular thing or substance: kind "one ~ of respiratory disorder" "a ~ of art" b: a distinguishable group of organisms c: linguistic form d: one of the different aspects a word may take as a result of inflection or change of spelling or pronunciation "verbal ~s" e: a mathematical expression of a particular type "a bilinear ~" "a polynomial ~"
10. a (1): orderly method of arrangement (as in the presentation of ideas): manner of coordinating elements (as of an artistic production or course of reasoning) (2): a particular kind or instance of such arrangement "the sonnet is a poetical ~" b: pattern, schema "arguments of the same logical ~" c: the structural element, plan, or design of a work of art--compare content 2c d: a visible and measurable unit defined by a contour: a bounded surface or volume 11: a grade in a British school or in some American private schools 12 a (1): the past performance of a race horse (2): racing form b: known ability to perform "a singer at the top of her ~" c: condition suitable for performing (as in athletic competition) "b
form vt (13c) 1 a: to give a particular shape to: shape or mold into a certain state or after a particular model "~ the dough into a ball" "a state ~ed along republican lines" b: to arrange themselves in "the dancers ~ed a line" c: to model by instruction and discipline "a mind ~ed by classical education"
2: to give form or shape to: fashion, construct
3: to serve to make up or constitute: be an essential or basic element of
4: develop, acquire "~ a habit"
5: to arrange in order: draw up
6. a: to assume an inflection so as to produce (as a tense) "~s the past in -ed" b: to combine to make (a compound word) ~ vi 1: to become formed or shaped
2: to take form: come into existence: arise
3: to take on a definite form, shape, or arrangement -- form.abil.i.ty n -- form.able adj -- form on : to take up a formation next to