Definitions

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

  • transitive verb To change the form or appearance of; transform. synonym: convert.
  • transitive verb To exalt or glorify.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To transform; change the outward form or appearance of: specifically used of the transfiguration of Christ.
  • To give an elevated or glorified appearance or character to; elevate and glorify; idealize: often with direct or indirect allusion to the transfiguration of Christ.
  • Synonyms Transmute, etc. See transform.

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

  • transitive verb To change the outward form or appearance of; to metamorphose; to transform.
  • transitive verb Especially, to change to something exalted and glorious; to give an ideal form to.

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

  • verb To transform the outward appearance of something; to convert into a different form, state or substance.
  • verb To glorify or exalt something or someone.

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

  • verb elevate or idealize, in allusion to Christ's transfiguration
  • verb change completely the nature or appearance of

Etymologies

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

[Middle English transfiguren, from Old French transfigurer, from Latin trānsfigūrāre : trāns-, trans- + figūra, form; see dheigh- in Indo-European roots.]

Examples

  • The word transfigure means, to change the appearance or form.

    Barnes New Testament Notes

  • Parris describes this as music's power to "transfigure": "I am already forgetting what Gordon Brown said to his conference in Bournemouth this week.

    Archive 2007-09-01

  • Parris describes this as music's power to "transfigure": "I am already forgetting what Gordon Brown said to his conference in Bournemouth this week.

    The enchantment of the transcendent

  • Ben also confessed to her that he tried for years to "pray the gay away," but he's done trying to transfigure himself now.

    Samara O'Shea: Pray The Gay Away?

  • The answer may still be no, but either way the duo of John Flansburgh and John Linnell have come to own their quirks and transfigure them into a lasting kind of cool.

    Wing It Out Loud Around Town

  • Ben also confessed to her that he tried for years to "pray the gay away," but he's done trying to transfigure himself now.

    Samara O'Shea: Pray The Gay Away?

  • Ai spent those same years scavenging Beijing's back alleys and antique shops for Silk Road materials he could transfigure into art, like Marcel Duchamp once did with a urinal or Andy Warhol did with a soup can.

    The Art of Resistance

  • Above all, that meant the end of the idea of the artist as shaman, a person able to transform and transfigure, who could conjure one thing, a work of art, out of another, its raw materials and constituent parts.

    A Magical Metamorphosis of the Ordinary

  • Or, more, a crusade — to invent a new culture for quasi-public schools and transfigure inner-city education in New York.

    The Saint (and Scourge) of Schools «

  • However, within the spiritual experience, we can know something for a MOMENT and that MOMENT is all it takes to transfigure our life forever, to alter our relationship to everything, and change us in the deepest sanctum of our being.

    Natasha Dern: Knowing: The Power Of Spiritual Reality

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