Meaning of CONTOUR in English


I. ˈkän-ˌtu̇r noun

Etymology: French, from Italian contorno, from contornare to round off, from Medieval Latin, to turn around, from Latin com- + tornare to turn on a lathe — more at turn

Date: 1662

1. : an outline especially of a curving or irregular figure : shape ; also : the line representing this outline

2. : the general form or structure of something : characteristic — often used in plural

contour s of a melody

to delineate the tortured psychological contour s of the tribal past — B. J. Phillips

3. : a usually meaningful change in intonation in speech

Synonyms: see outline

II. adjective

Date: 1844

1. : following contour lines or forming furrows or ridges along them

contour flooding

contour farming

2. : made to fit the contour of something

a contour couch

contour sheets

III. transitive verb

Date: 1871


a. : to shape the contour of

b. : to shape so as to fit contours

2. : to construct (as a road) in conformity to a contour

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate English vocabulary.      Энциклопедический словарь английского языка Merriam Webster.