Definitions

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

  • transitive verb To deflect (light, for example) from a straight path by refraction.
  • transitive verb To alter by viewing through a medium.
  • transitive verb Medicine To determine the refraction of (an eye, for example).

from The Century Dictionary.

  • 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.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To bend sharply and abruptly back; to break off.
  • transitive verb 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.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb intransitive, of light To change direction as a result of entering a different medium
  • verb transitive, optics To cause (light) to change direction as a result of entering a different medium.

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

  • verb subject to refraction
  • verb determine the refracting power of (a lens)

Etymologies

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

[Latin refringere, refrāct-, to break up : re-, re- + frangere, to break; see bhreg- in Indo-European roots.]

Examples

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