American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To deflect (light, for example) from a straight path by refraction.
- v. To alter by viewing through a medium: "In the Quartet reality is refracted through a variety of eyes” ( Elizabeth Kastor).
- v. Medicine To determine the refraction of (an eye, for example).
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To bend back sharply or abruptly; especially, in optics, to break the natural course of, as of a ray of light; deflect at. a certain angle on passing from one medium into another of a different density. See refraction.
- v. intransitive, of light To change direction as a result of entering a different medium
- v. transitive, optics To cause (light) to change direction as a result of entering a different medium.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To bend sharply and abruptly back; to break off.
- v. To break the natural course of, as rays of light orr heat, when passing from one transparent medium to another of different density; to cause to deviate from a direct course by an action distinct from reflection.
- v. subject to refraction
- v. determine the refracting power of (a lens)
- Latin refringere, refrāct-, to break up : re-, re- + frangere, to break; see bhreg- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“Anna half imagined that the stars were flickering: since there was no atmosphere to refract their light, they were being distorted by cloaking fields.”
“Did they feel any sense of conflict between reporting the truth and the obligation to refract the world through rose-tinted lenses?”
“It was a simple but adequate affair: a fire built in the snow; alongside, their sleeping-furs spread in a single bed on a mat of spruce boughs; behind the bed an oblong of canvas stretched to refract the heat.”
“The laser's optical system would have to overcome the distorting effect of atmospheric turbulence, the variations in pressure and temperature that refract starlight to create the "twinkling" effect in the night sky.”
“Even disagreeing with the interpretation doesn't invalidate it, as such, these characters can splinter, multiply, refract what have and still return to form.”
“After all, in asymmetric conflicts between oppressive regimes and the people whom they oppress, it is no surprise that the authoritarians will try to refract innovations for their agenda.”
“The waste heat from the wings also did funny things to refract the light.”
“What they did was refract the light into a series of Mickey Mouse ears.”
“I ask only because we seem today to be much more savvy about being in Important Times, collectively aware that we're passing through history – a tsunami, exploding aircraft, malign old tyrannies being shucked like peas, an old man's important half-truths being pointlessly interrupted by a skidmark – and, being aware that this is living-dramatic, wanting to refract it instantly as drama.”
“However, these things are beautiful because of the way they reflect and refract light.”
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