contour
I. noun Etymology: French, from Italian contorno, from contornare to round off, from Medieval Latin, to turn around, from Latin com- + tornare to turn on a lathe — more at turn Date: 1662 1. an outline especially of a curving or irregular figure ; shape; also the line representing this outline 2. the general form or structure of something ; characteristic — often used in plural <
contours of a melody
>
<
to delineate the tortured psychological contours of the tribal past — B. J. Phillips
>
3. a usually meaningful change in intonation in speech Synonyms: see outline II. adjective Date: 1844 1. following contour lines or forming furrows or ridges along them <
contour flooding
>
<
contour farming
>
2. made to fit the contour of something <
a contour couch
>
<
contour sheets
>
III. transitive verb Date: 1871 1. a. to shape the contour of b. to shape so as to fit contours 2. to construct (as a road) in conformity to a contour

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • contour — [ kɔ̃tur ] n. m. • v. 1200 « enceinte »; de contourner, avec infl. de l it. contorno 1 ♦ (1651) Limite extérieure d un objet, d un corps. ⇒ bord, bordure, délinéament, limite, périmètre, périphérie, 3. tour. Le contour d une table, d un tapis.… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Contour — may refer to: an outline or silhouette a contour line on a contour map, or the corresponding line on the ground or sea bed Contour (linguistics), a phonetic sound Pitch contour (music), a melody shape Contour (camera system), a 3D digital camera… …   Wikipedia

  • CONTOUR — antes del lanzamiento Organización NASA Estado Perdido en el espacio …   Wikipedia Español

  • contour — [kän′to͞or΄] n. [Fr < It contorno < LL contornare, to go around < L com , intens. + tornare, to turn in a lathe: see TURN] 1. the outline of a figure, mass, land, etc. 2. the representation of such an outline vt. 1. to make a contour or… …   English World dictionary

  • contour — CONTOUR. subs. masc. Terme de Peinture et de Sculpture. Ce qui termine une figure, ou les parties d une figure. Un beau contour. Le contour de cette figure est admirable. De beaux contours. Des contours hardis, bien entendus. Des contours élégans …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • Contour — Con*tour , n. [F. contour, fr. contourner to mark the outlines; con + tourner to turn. See {Turn}.] 1. The outline of a figure or body, or the line or lines representing such an outline; the line that bounds; periphery. [1913 Webster] Titian s… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • contour — 1660s, a term in painting and sculpture, from Fr. contour circumference, outline, from It. and M.L. contornare to go around, from L. com , intensive prefix (see COM (Cf. com )), + tornare to turn on a lathe, from tornus lathe (see TURN (Cf.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • contour — Contour. s. m. Terme de Peinture & de Sculpture. Ce qui termine une figure, & les parties d une figure, & leur donne le tour qu elles doivent avoir. Un beau contour. le contour de cette figure est admirable. de beaux contours. des contours hardis …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Contour — Contour, der Abriß oder Umriß von Bildern, Gebäuden oder andern Dingen, die durch ihre Gestalt in die Augen fallen. Bildlich wendet man es auch z. B. auf Wissenschaften an; und der Contour einer solchen müßte ihren Umfang und Inhalt so darstellen …   Damen Conversations Lexikon

  • contour — ► NOUN 1) an outline, especially one representing or bounding the shape or form of something. 2) (also contour line) a line on a map joining points of equal height above or below sea level. ► VERB 1) mould into a specific shape. 2) (contoured)… …   English terms dictionary

  • Contour — (fr., spr. Kongtuhr, ital. Contorno), Umriß, Linien, durch welche bei Zeichnungen die äußeren Umrisse der Figuren u. Gegenstände bestimmt werden; davon Contonriren, die Umrisse der Figuren zeichnen. Von der Richtigkeit der C. hängt im Allgemeinen …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

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