from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The characteristic surface configuration of a thing; an outline or contour: synonym: form.
  • noun Spatial form, contour, or appearance.
  • noun The body or outward appearance of a person or an animal.
  • noun The contour of a person's body; the figure.
  • noun A definite or distinctive form.
  • noun Form, condition, or embodiment.
  • noun A desirable form.
  • noun Assumed or false appearance; guise.
  • noun A ghostly form; a phantom.
  • noun Something, such as a mold or pattern, used to give or determine form.
  • noun The condition of something with regard to effectiveness, use, or appearance.
  • noun Bodily condition, as in regard to muscle tone or endurance.
  • transitive verb To create or fashion, as.
  • transitive verb To give a particular form to (a material).
  • transitive verb To create or configure, as from a material.
  • transitive verb To cause to conform to a particular form.
  • transitive verb To plan or devise.
  • transitive verb To embody in a definite form.
  • transitive verb To influence in a formative way.
  • transitive verb To direct the course of.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To form; make; create; construct.
  • To give shape or form to; cut, mold, or make into a particular form: as, to shape a garment; to shape a vessel on the potters' wheel.
  • To adapt, as to a purpose; cause to conform; adjust; regulate: with to or unto.
  • To form with the mind; plan; contrive; devise; arrange; prepare.
  • To get ready; address (one's self to do something).
  • To direct (one's course); betake (one's self): as, to shape one's course homeward.
  • To image; conceive; call or conjure up.
  • To dress; array.
  • To destine; foreordain; predestine.
  • To take shape or form; be or become adapted, fit, or comformable.
  • To turn out; happen.
  • noun An obsolete form of the past participle of shape.
  • noun In Tibet, a privy councillor; one of the five who advise the Tibetan regent in state affairs.
  • noun Form; figure; outward contour, aspect, or appearance; hence, guise: as, the two things are dissimilar in shape; the shape of the head; in man's shape.
  • noun That which was form or figure; a mere form, image, or figure; an appearance; a phantasm.
  • noun Concrete embodiment or form, as of a thought, conception, or quality.
  • noun Appearance; guise; dress; disguise; specifically, a theatrical costume (a complete dress).
  • noun Way; manner.
  • noun In industrial art:
  • noun A pattern to be followed by workmen; especially, a flat pattern to guide a cutter.


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

[Middle English, from Old English gesceap, a creation.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English shap, schape, from Old English ġesceap ("shape, form, created being, creature, creation, dispensation, fate, condition, sex, gender, genitalia"), from Proto-Germanic *ga- + *skapan (“shape, nature, condition”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kÀp- (“to split, cut”). Cognate with Middle Dutch schap ("form"), Middle High German geschaf ("creature"), Icelandic skap ("state, condition, temper, mood").

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English shapen, schapen, from Old English scieppan ("to shape, form, make, create, assign, arrange, destine, order, adjudge"), from Proto-Germanic *skapjanan (“to create”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kÀp- (“to split, divide”). Cognate with Dutch scheppen, German schaffen, Swedish skapa ("to create, make").


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  • Another development is “shape memory” alloys which recover their shape with a temperature change.

    Chapter 5 1984

  • But by the next harvest I had it so constructed, as to be drawn by an iron bar so shaped, appended and supported on the underneath part of the carriage, as to admit of the machine turning in any direction, and the carriage would follow just as the two hind wheels of a wagon do; the carriage had a seat behind, and a thick, deep cushion in front, for the raker to press his knees against while removing the grain from the platform to his right hand, which he was enabled to do with apparent ease with a _rake of peculiar shape_; -- (it cannot be done with a rake of ordinary shape).

    Obed Hussey Who, of All Inventors, Made Bread Cheap Various

  • To illustrate the functionality let's take an example of createCommand readonly ArrayList _graphicsList; public CreateCommand (DrawObject shape, ArrayList graphicsList) {_shape = shape; _graphicsList = graphicsList;} void Execute () {_graphicsList.

    The Code Project Latest Articles Ajay Britto 2010

  • The pumpkin shape is cute on its own, and a pumpkin muffin certainly needs no additional decoration.

    Baking Bites » Print » Pumpkin Cupcake Pan 2008

  • The pumpkin shape is cute on its own, and a pumpkin muffin certainly needs no additional decoration.

    Pumpkin Cupcake Pan | Baking Bites 2008

  • Inspiring someone to lose weight and get in shape is a wonderful gift.

    He woke up to a big problem and shed 100 pounds 2008

  • Being in shape is one point, but having your legs in basketball shape is a totally different thing. - Jordan's comeback has legs 2002

  • Finally, applying repeater to a shape is also a perfect candidate for After Effects ‘Brainstorm’.

    Icons Star | SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles 2009

  • This shape is also known to represent the pagan God called, Remphan.

    Four Star | SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles 2009

  • There are some dangling plot threads, and some details/layering missing ... but the shape is there, and I think the last line gets to stay ...

    Done! karenmiller 2009


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  • SHAPE, the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe, transferred to Belgium after France’s official withdrawal from NATO in 1966.

    March 31, 2008

  • It was always a warm, sunny day with a sweet-smelling wind around the next corner. When Maggie-Now went to the baker's for the morning buns, there was usually a customer there who confided to the bakery woman: "I'm going to the cemetery in my shape today." That meant it was warm enough to go without a coat.

    Maggie-Now and her mother went to the cemetery in their shapes.

    Betty Smith, Maggie-Now (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1958), p. 107 (The setting is Brooklyn, before World War I.)

    September 11, 2018