Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A development or consequence growing out of and sometimes complicating a problem, plan, or statement: the ramifications of a court decision.
  • n. The act or process of branching out or dividing into branches.
  • n. A subordinate part extending from a main body; a branch.
  • n. An arrangement of branches or branching parts.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A branching-out, the act or result of developing branches; specifically the divergence of the stem and limbs of a plant into smaller ones, or of similar developments in blood vessels, anatomical structures etc.
  • n. An offshoot of a decision, fact etc.; a consequence or implication, especially one which complicates a situation.
  • n. An arrangement of branches.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The process of branching, or the development of branches or offshoots from a stem; also, the mode of their arrangement.
  • n. A small branch or offshoot proceeding from a main stock or channel.
  • n. A division into principal and subordinate classes, heads, or departments; also, one of the subordinate parts.
  • n. The production of branchlike figures.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act or process of ramifying, or the state of being ramified; a branching out; division into branches, or into divergent lines, courses, or parts, as of trees or plants, blood-vessels, a mountain-chain, a topic or subject, etc.
  • n. The manner or result of ramifying or branching; that which is ramified or divided into branches; a set of branches: as, the ramification of a coral; the ramifications of an artery or a nerve; the ramifications of the capillaries, or of nerves in an insect's wing. See cuts under Dendrocæla and embryology
  • n. In botany, the branching, or the manner of branching, of stems and roots.
  • n. One of the branches or divergent lines or parts into which anything is divided; a division or subdivision springing or derived from a main stem or source: as, the ramifications of a conspiracy; to pursue a subjeet in all its ramifications.
  • n. The production of figures resembling branches.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a development that complicates a situation
  • n. the act of branching out or dividing into branches
  • n. an arrangement of branching parts
  • n. a part of a forked or branching shape

Etymologies

From Middle French ramification, or its source, the participle stem of Latin ramificare. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • And at least for now, the ramification is that they will never get to read the entire book.

    Publishers and bloggers

  • One such ramification is the importation of “books” per se.

    On the Great Book Blockade of 2009 (Updated 7 May) (with BDAP Paper) « BAHAY TALINHAGA

  • Moralists who find acknowledging or exploiting racism under any circumstances unpalatable should consider the long-term ramification of Obama's election on American political inclusiveness.

    Small Steps, Big Change

  • I also realize that the word ramification is a big "funny" sounding word, with a particularly exciting appeal, for some reason, but I use it only in the most heterosexual concerned Christian American appeal kind of way.

    Archive 2004-01-11

  • I've already put forward proposals for infrastructure, which I think can have a huge long-term ramification -- putting people back to work right now, doing the work that America needs done, laying the foundation for long-term competitiveness.

    Crooks and Liars

  • The Golden State upset was exciting, but its major ramification is that we had one team in the conference finals who just simply isn’t up to the caliber of that competition.

    Matthew Yglesias » Western Conference

  • The ramification is the total disappearance of manufacturing jobs in America and the declining working class and rising unemployment in the Rust belt and other manufacturing towns in America.

    The Conscience of a Chinese Capitalist

  • He also proves some new or less-known results (reflection theorem, structure of the abelian closure of a number field) and lays emphasis on the invariant T_p, of abelian p-ramification, which is related to important Galois cohomology properties and p-adic conjectures.

    AvaxHome RSS:

  • And I think any actor will tell you, anybody in the public eye, that the tabloids are the worst kind of ramification of being a celebrity.

    CNN Transcript Feb 21, 2005

  • If a small positive ball be throwing off brushes with ramifications ten inches long, how can the ball affect that part of a ramification which is five inches from it?

    Experimental Researches in Electricity, Volume 1

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Comments

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  • This word makes me feel sheepish.

    August 19, 2010