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

  • n. The act of inflecting or the state of being inflected.
  • n. Alteration in pitch or tone of the voice.
  • n. Grammar An alteration of the form of a word by the addition of an affix, as in English dogs from dog, or by changing the form of a base, as in English spoke from speak, that indicates grammatical features such as number, person, mood, or tense.
  • n. Grammar An affix indicating such a grammatical feature, as the -s in the English third person singular verb form speaks.
  • n. Grammar The paradigm of a word.
  • n. Grammar A pattern of forming paradigms, such as noun inflection or verb inflection.
  • n. A turning or bending away from a course or position of alignment.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A change in the form of a word that reflects a change in grammatical function.
  • n. A change in pitch or tone of voice.
  • n. A change in curvature from concave to convex or from convex to concave.
  • n. A turning away from a straight course.
  • n. diffraction

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of inflecting, or the state of being inflected.
  • n. A bend; a fold; a curve; a turn; a twist.
  • n. A slide, modulation, or accent of the voice.
  • n. The variation or change which words undergo to mark case, gender, number, comparison, tense, person, mood, voice, etc.
  • n.
  • n. Any change or modification in the pitch or tone of the voice.
  • n. A departure from the monotone, or reciting note, in chanting.
  • n. Same as Diffraction.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act of inflecting, or the state of being inflected; a bend or bending.
  • n. In optics, the peculiar modification or deviation which light undergoes in passing the edges of an opaque body, usually attended by the formation of colored fringes: more commonly called diffraction.
  • n. In grammar, the variation of nouns, etc., by declension, and of verbs by conjugation; more specifically, variation in part by internal change, and not by added elements alone.
  • n. Modulation of the voice in speaking, or any change in the pitch or tone of the voice in singing.
  • n. In geometry, the place on a curve where a tangent moving along the curve by a rolling motion changes the direction of its turning, and begins to turn back; a stationary tangent.
  • n. In eccles. chanting, same as accent, 7.

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

  • n. a manner of speaking in which the loudness or pitch or tone of the voice is modified
  • n. a change in the form of a word (usually by adding a suffix) to indicate a change in its grammatical function
  • n. deviation from a straight or normal course
  • n. the patterns of stress and intonation in a language


From the English inflexion, from the Latin inflexio, inflexionisĀ ("a bending away from"); the spelling inflection is due to influence from correction. (Wiktionary)



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