Definitions

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

  • noun Detailed, precise description of a place or region.
  • noun Graphic representation of the surface features of a place or region on a map, indicating their relative positions and elevations.
  • noun A description or an analysis of a structured entity, showing the relations among its components.
  • noun The surface features of a place or region.
  • noun The surface features of an object.
  • noun The surveying of the features of a place or region.
  • noun The study or description of an anatomical region or part.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The detailed description of a particular locality, as a city, town, estate, parish, or tract of land; the detailed description of any region, including its cities, towns, villages, castles, etc.
  • noun The features of a region or locality collectively: as, the topography of a place.
  • noun In surveying, the delineation of the features, natural and artificial, of a country or a locality.
  • noun In anatomy, regional anatomy; the mapping of the surface of the body with reference to the parts and organs lying beneath such divisions of the surface, or the bounding of any part of the body by anatomical landmarks.
  • noun In zoology, the determination of those different parts of the surface of an animal which may be conveniently recognized by name, for the purpose of ordinary description of specimens: as, the topography of a bird, a crab, an insect.

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

  • noun The description of a particular place, town, manor, parish, or tract of land; especially, the exact and scientific delineation and description in minute detail of any place or region.

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

  • noun a precise description of a place
  • noun a detailed graphic representation of the surface features of a place or object
  • noun the features themselves (the terrain)
  • noun the surveying of the features

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

  • noun precise detailed study of the surface features of a region
  • noun the configuration of a surface and the relations among its man-made and natural features

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

First attested in 1432. From Middle English topographye, from Latin topographia, from Ancient Greek τοπογραφία (topographia), from τόπος (topos, "place") + γράφω (graphō, "I write").

Examples

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