Refract Re*fract" (r?*fr$kt"), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Refracted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Refracting}.] [L. refractus, p. p. of refringere; pref. re- re- + frangere to break: cf. F. r['e]fracter. SEe {FRacture}, and cf. {Refrain}, n.] 1. To bend sharply and abruptly back; to break off. [1913 Webster]

2. 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; as, a dense medium refrcts the rays of light as they pass into it from a rare medium. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • refract — (v.) 1610s, from L. refractus, pp. of refringere (see REFRACTION (Cf. refraction)). Related: Refracted; refracting …   Etymology dictionary

  • refract — ► VERB ▪ (of water, air, or glass) make (a ray of light) change direction when it enters at an angle. ORIGIN Latin refringere break up …   English terms dictionary

  • refract — [ri frakt′] vt. [< L refractus, pp. of refringere, to turn aside < re , back + frangere, to BREAK] 1. to cause (a ray or wave of light, heat, or sound) to undergo refraction 2. Optics to measure the degree of refraction of (an eye or lens)… …   English World dictionary

  • refract — UK [rɪˈfrækt] / US verb [transitive] Word forms refract : present tense I/you/we/they refract he/she/it refracts present participle refracting past tense refracted past participle refracted physics if a surface such as water or glass refracts… …   English dictionary

  • refract — transitive verb Etymology: Latin refractus, past participle of refringere to break open, break up, from re + frangere to break more at break Date: 1612 1. a. to subject (as a ray of light) to refraction b. to alter or distort as if by refraction… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • refract — verb a) To change direction as a result of entering a different medium A prism can refract light. b) (Optics) To cause (light) to change direction as a result of entering a different medium. See Also: refractive, refracti …   Wiktionary

  • refract — [[t]rɪfræ̱kt[/t]] refracts, refracting, refracted V ERG When a ray of light or a sound wave refracts or is refracted, the path it follows bends at a particular point, for example when it enters water or glass. [V n] As we age the lenses of the… …   English dictionary

  • refract — verb 1》 (of water, air, or glass) make (a ray of light) change direction when it enters at an angle.     ↘change the direction of propagation of (radio, sound, or other waves) by causing them to travel at different speeds at different points… …   English new terms dictionary

  • refract — 1 (of water, air, glass, etc.) deflect (a ray of light etc.) at a certain angle when it enters obliquely from another medium. 2 determine the refractive condition of (the eye). Etymology: L refringere refract (as RE , frangere break) …   Useful english dictionary

  • refract — refractable, adj. refractedly, adv. refractedness, n. /ri frakt /, v.t. 1. to subject to refraction. 2. to determine the refractive condition of (an eye). [1605 15; < L refractus, ptp. of refringere to break, force back, equiv. to re RE + frac… …   Universalium

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”