a. The shape and structure of an object: the form of a snowflake.
b. The body or outward appearance of a person or an animal; figure: In the fog we could see two forms standing on the bridge.
c. A model of the human figure or part of it used for displaying clothes.
d. A mold for the setting of concrete.
a. The way in which a thing exists, acts, or manifests itself: an element usually found in the form of a gas.
b. Philosophy The essential or ideal nature of something, especially as distinguished from its matter or material being.
a. A kind, type, or variety: A cat is a form of mammal.
b. Botany A subdivision of a variety usually differing in one trivial characteristic, such as flower color.
a. Method of arrangement or manner of coordinating elements in verbal or musical composition: presented my ideas in outline form; a treatise in the form of a dialogue.
b. A particular type or example of such arrangement: The essay is a literary form.
a. Procedure as determined or governed by regulation or custom: gave his consent solely as a matter of form.
b. Manners or conduct as governed by etiquette, decorum, or custom: Arriving late to a wedding is considered bad form.
c. A fixed order of words or procedures, as for use in a ceremony: “As they had never had a funeral aboard a ship, they began rehearsing the forms so as to be ready” (Arthur Conan Doyle).
d. A document with blanks for the insertion of details or information: insurance forms.
a. Performance considered with regard to acknowledged criteria: a musician at the top of her form.
b. A pattern of behavior or performance: remained true to form and showed up late.
c. Fitness, as of an athlete or animal, with regard to health or training: a dog in excellent form.
d. A racing form.
7. A grade in a British secondary school or in some American private schools: the sixth form.
a. A linguistic form.
b. The external aspect of words with regard to their inflections, pronunciation, or spelling.
a. Chiefly British A long seat; a bench.
b. The lair or resting place of a hare.
v. formed, form·ing, forms
a. To give form to; shape: form clay into figures.
b. To make or fashion by shaping: form figures out of clay.
c. To develop in the mind; conceive: Her reading led her to form a different opinion.
a. To arrange oneself in: Holding out his arms, the cheerleader formed a T. The acrobats formed a pyramid.
b. To organize or arrange: The environmentalists formed their own party.
c. To fashion, train, or develop by instruction, discipline, or precept: formed the recruits into excellent soldiers.
a. To come to have; develop or acquire: He formed the habit of walking to work.
b. To enter into (a relationship): They formed a friendship.
4. To constitute or compose, especially out of separate elements: the bones that form the skeleton.
a. To produce (a tense, for example) by inflection: form the pluperfect.
b. To make (a word) by derivation or composition.
1. To become formed or shaped: Add enough milk so the dough forms easily into balls.
2. To come into being by taking form; arise: Clouds will form in the afternoon.
3. To assume a specified form, shape, or pattern: The soldiers formed into a column.
[Middle English forme, from Latin fōrma, possibly (via Etruscan) from Greek morphē.]
Synonyms: form, figure, shape, contour, profile
These nouns refer to the external outline of a thing. Form is the outline and structure of a thing as opposed to its substance: the pointed form of a pyramid; a brooch in the form of a lovers’ knot. Figure refers usually to form as established by bounding or enclosing lines: The cube is a solid geometric figure. Shape can imply either two-dimensional outline or three-dimensional definition that indicates both outline and bulk or mass: paper cutouts in the shape of flowers and stars; “He faced her, a hooded and cloaked shape” (Joseph Conrad).
Contour refers to the outline and often the surface of a three-dimensional figure or body: the streamlined contour of the hybrid vehicle. Profile denotes the outline of something viewed against a background and especially the outline of the human face in side view: The police took a photograph of the mugger’s profile.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. the shape or configuration of something as distinct from its colour, texture, etc
2. the particular mode, appearance, etc, in which a thing or person manifests itself: water in the form of ice; in the form of a bat.
3. a type or kind: imprisonment is a form of punishment.
a. a printed document, esp one with spaces in which to insert facts or answers: an application form.
b. (as modifier): a form letter.
5. physical or mental condition, esp good condition, with reference to ability to perform: off form.
6. (Individual Sports, other than specified) the previous record of a horse, athlete, etc, esp with regard to fitness
7. slang Brit a criminal record
8. (Art Terms) style, arrangement, or design in the arts, as opposed to content
9. (Art Terms) a fixed mode of artistic expression or representation in literary, musical, or other artistic works: sonata form; sonnet form.
10. a mould, frame, etc, that gives shape to something
11. organized structure or order, as in an artistic work
12. (Education) education chiefly Brit a group of children who are taught together; class
13. manner, method, or style of doing something, esp with regard to recognized standards
14. behaviour or procedure, esp as governed by custom or etiquette: good form.
15. formality or ceremony
16. a prescribed set or order of words, terms, etc, as in a religious ceremony or legal document
a. the structure of anything as opposed to its constitution or content
b. essence as opposed to matter
d. (in the philosophy of Aristotle) the constitution of matter to form a substance; by virtue of this its nature can be understood
19. Brit a bench, esp one that is long, low, and backless
20. (Zoology) the nest or hollow in which a hare lives
21. (Biology) a group of organisms within a species that differ from similar groups by trivial differences, as of colour
a. the phonological or orthographic shape or appearance of a linguistic element, such as a word
b. a linguistic element considered from the point of view of its shape or sound rather than, for example, its meaning
24. (Biology) taxonomy a group distinguished from other groups by a single characteristic: ranked below a variety
25. to give shape or form to or to take shape or form, esp a specified or particular shape
26. to come or bring into existence: a scum formed on the surface.
27. to make, produce, or construct or be made, produced, or constructed
28. to construct or develop in the mind: to form an opinion.
29. (tr) to train, develop, or mould by instruction, discipline, or example
30. (tr) to acquire, contract, or develop: to form a habit.
31. (tr) to be an element of, serve as, or constitute: this plank will form a bridge.
32. (tr) to draw up; organize: to form a club.
[C13: from Old French forme, from Latin forma shape, model]
(Philosophy) (in the philosophy of Plato) an ideal archetype existing independently of those individuals which fall under it, supposedly explaining their common properties and serving as the only objects of true knowledge as opposed to the mere opinion obtainable of matters of fact. Also called: Idea
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. external appearance of a clearly defined area, as distinguished from color or material; configuration: a triangular form.
2. the shape of a thing or person.
3. a body, esp. that of a human being.
4. a dummy having the same measurements as a human body, used for fitting or displaying clothing.
5. something that gives or determines shape; a mold.
6. a particular condition, character, or mode in which something appears: water in the form of ice.
7. the manner or style of arranging and coordinating parts for a pleasing or effective result, as in literary or musical composition.
8. the organization, placement, or relationship of basic elements, as lines and colors in a painting or volumes and voids in a sculpture, so as to produce a coherent image; the formal structure of a work of art.
9. a particular kind, type, species, or variety, esp. of a zoological group.
10. the combination of all the like faces possible on a crystal of given symmetry.
11. due or proper shape; orderly arrangement of parts; good order.
a. the structure, organization, or essential character of something, as opposed to its matter.
c. Aristotelianism. that which places a thing in its particular species or kind.
13. a set, prescribed, or customary order or method of doing something.
14. a set order of words, as for use in religious ritual or in a legal document; formula.
15. a document with blank spaces to be filled in with particulars: a tax form.
16. a conventional method of procedure or behavior: society’s forms.
17. procedure according to a set order or method.
18. conformity to the usages of society; formality; ceremony.
19. manner or method of performing something; technique: The violinist displayed excellent form.
20. physical condition or fitness, as for performing: a tennis player in peak form.
b. a particular shape of a word that occurs in more than one shape: In I’m, ‘m is a form of am.
c. a word with a particular inflectional ending or other modification: Goes is a form of go.
d. the external shape or pattern of a word or other construction, as distinguished from its meaning, function, etc.
22. temporary boarding or sheeting of plywood or metal for giving a desired shape to poured concrete, rammed earth, etc.
23. a grade or class of pupils in a British secondary school or in certain U.S. private schools.
24. a bench or long seat.
25. an assemblage of printing types, leads, etc., secured in a chase to print from.
26. to construct or frame.
27. to make or produce.
28. to serve to make up; compose; constitute: Three citizens form the review board.
29. to place in order; arrange; organize.
30. to frame (ideas, opinions, etc.) in the mind.
31. to contract or develop (habits, friendships, etc.).
32. to give form or shape to; shape; fashion.
33. to give a particular form or shape to: Form the dough into squares.
34. to mold or develop by discipline or instructions.
35. to produce (a word or class of words) by adding an affix, combining elements, or changing the shape of the form: to form the plural by adding -s.
36. to take or assume form.
37. to be formed or produced: Ice began to form on the window.
38. to take a particular form or arrangement: The ice formed in patches across the window.
[1175–1225; Middle English forme < Old French < Latin fōrma form, mold, sort, Medieval Latin: seat]
a combining form meaning “having the form of”: cruciform.
[< Latin -fōrmis]
Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
variability of a chemical compound in which there is no variation in crystalline form. — allomeric, adj.
the quality of being shapeless. Also, Rare. amorphy. — amorphic, adj.
a distorted image of an object, as in anamorphic art. Also anamorphosis. — anamorphic, adj.
a cylindrical mirror for correcting the distorted image created by anamorphism.
Physical Geography. the study of the characteristics, origins, and development of land forms. — geomorphologist, n. — geomorphologic, geomorphological, adj.
the state or condition of being curved, especially convexly. — gibbous, adj.
any minor malformation.
1. the quality of differing in form from the standard or norm.
2. the condition of existing in different forms at different stages of development, as certain insects. — heteromorphic, adj.
the state or quality of having a peculiar or characteristic form; uniqueness or individuality in form. — idiomorphic, adj.
the state of having no material body or form. — incorporeity, n.
the origin(s) of the various aspects of the form of an organism. Also called morphogeny. — morphogenetic, adj.
the scientific description of form. — morphographer, n. — morphographic, adj.
1. the study of the form or structure of anything.
2. the branch of biology that studies the form and structure of plants and animals. See also geomorphology. — morphologist, n. — morphologic, morphological, adj.
the process or technique of measuring the external form of an object. — morphometrical, adj.
the study of the laws governing form in nature. — morphonomic, adj.
the study of the phylogeny of forms.
the state or quality of having every form. — omniform, adj.
the state or quality of being right-angled or perpendicular. — orthogonal, adj.
1. the phase in the development of an organism in which its form and structure pass through the changes undergone in the evolution of the species.
2. the morphological and structural changes that occur during insect development. Also palingenesia, palingenesy. — palingenetic, adj.
the branch of morphology that studies the forms of organisms from a mathematical point of view. — promorphologist, n. — promorphological adj.
the form, disposition, or outline of a thing or concept. — schematist, n.
a branch of morphology that regards an organism as made up of other organisms. — tectological, adj.
the property of displaying four different forms. — tetramorph, n. — tetramorphic, adj.
the state or quality of occurring in three distinct forms, usually at different stages of development, as certain plants, organisms, etc. — trimorphic, trimorphous, adj.
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
class form grade year
A class is a group of pupils or students who are taught together.
If classes were smaller, children would learn more.
I had forty students in my class.
In some British schools and in some American private schools, form is used instead of “https://www.thefreedictionary.com/class”. Form is used especially with a number to refer to a particular class or age group.
I teach the fifth form.
She’s in Form 5.
In British English, a year is a set of students of a similar age, who started school at around the same time.
‘Which year are you in?’ ‘I’m in the fifth year, and Krish is in the third year.’
A boy in the second grade won first prize.
Collins COBUILD English Usage © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 2004, 2011, 2012
Past participle: formed
Collins English Verb Tables © HarperCollins Publishers 2011