shapes, shaping, shaped
1) N-COUNT: oft N of n, also in N The shape of an object, a person, or an area is the appearance of their outside edges or surfaces, for example whether they are round, square, curved, or fat.

Each mirror is made to order and can be designed to almost any shape or size.

...little pens in the shape of baseball bats...

The glass bottle is the shape of a woman's torso.

...sofas and chairs of contrasting shapes and colours...

The buds are conical or pyramidal in shape...

These bras should be handwashed to help them keep their shape...

Walking is extremely beneficial to your body shape.

2) N-COUNT You can refer to something that you can see as a shape if you cannot see it clearly, or if its outline is the clearest or most striking aspect of it.

The great grey shape of a tank rolled out of the village...

Lying in bed we often see dark shapes of herons silhouetted against the moon.

3) N-COUNT A shape is a space enclosed by an outline, for example a circle, a square, or a triangle.

...if you imagine a sort of a kidney shape...

He suggested that the shapes represented a map of Britain and Ireland.

4) N-SING: usu N of n The shape of something that is planned or organized is its structure and character.

European Community leaders are meeting in Dublin to plan the future shape of Western Europe...

Ultimately, we can change the shape of people's lives.

5) VERB Someone or something that shapes a situation or an activity has a very great influence on the way it develops.

[V n] Christian Democratic leaders are meeting to discuss their role in shaping the future of Europe...

[V n] Like it or not, our families shape our lives and make us what we are.

6) VERB If you shape an object, you give it a particular shape, using your hands or a tool.

[V n into n] Cut the dough in half and shape each half into a loaf.

[V n] ...machinery for shaping the plutonium core of nuclear weapons.

7) See also shaped
8) PHRASE: v-link PHR If you say that something is the shape of things to come, you mean that it is the start of a new trend or development, and in future things will be like this.

British Rail says its new Liverpool Street station is the shape of things to come.

9) PHRASE: PHR after v (emphasis) If you say, for example, that you will not accept something in any shape or form, or in any way, shape or form, you are emphasizing that you will not accept it in any circumstances.

I don't condone violence in any shape or form...

There is absolutely no reason for consumers to be panicking in any way, shape or form.

10) PHRASE: PHR after v, v-link PHR If someone or something is in shape, or in good shape, they are in a good state of health or in a good condition. If they are in bad shape, they are in a bad state of health or in a bad condition.

...the Fatburner Diet Book, a comprehensive guide to getting in shape...

He was still in better shape than many young men...

The trees were in bad shape from dry rot.

11) PHRASE: PHR n You can use in the shape of to state exactly who or what you are referring to, immediately after referring to them in a general way.

The Prime Minister found a surprise ally today in the shape of Jacques Delors, the Commission President...

What industry needed now was a little hope in the shape of an interest-rate cut.

12) PHRASE: V inflects If you lick , knock, or whip someone or something into shape, you use whatever methods are necessary to change or improve them so that they are in the condition that you want them to be in.

You'll have four months in which to lick the recruits into shape...

Few people doubt his ability to whip the economy into shape.

13) PHRASE: PHR after v If something is out of shape, it is no longer in its proper or original shape, for example because it has been damaged or wrongly handled.

Once most wires are bent out of shape, they don't return to the original position.

14) PHRASE: v-link PHR If you are out of shape, you are unhealthy and unable to do a lot of physical activity without getting tired.
15) PHRASE: V inflects If you say that things or people of a certain type come in all shapes and sizes, you mean that there are a large number of them, and that they are often very different from each other.

Colleges and universities come in all shapes and sizes.

16) PHRASE: V inflects When something takes shape, it develops or starts to appear in such a way that it becomes fairly clear what its final form will be.

In 1912 women's events were added, and the modern Olympic programme began to take shape.

Phrasal Verbs:

English dictionary. 2008.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Shape — Shape, n. [OE. shap, schap, AS. sceap in gesceap creation, creature, fr. the root of scieppan, scyppan, sceppan, to shape, to do, to effect; akin to OS. giskeppian, OFries. skeppa, D. scheppen, G. schaffen, OHG. scaffan, scepfen, skeffen, Icer.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Shape — (sh[=a]p), v. t. [imp. {Shaped} (sh[=a]pt); p. p. {Shaped} or {Shapen} (sh[=a]p n); p. pr. & vb. n. {Shaping}.] [OE. shapen, schapen, AS. sceapian. The p. p. shapen is from the strong verb, AS. scieppan, scyppan, sceppan, p. p. sceapen. See… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Shape — Shape, v. i. To suit; to be adjusted or conformable. [R.] Shak. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Shape-Up — is the name given to a hairstyle that is a cut around the hairline. It is usually mixed and matched with other hair styles, but on many occasions is done alone.You can most likely find it in the South Philly Area. It is typically found amongst… …   Wikipedia

  • Shape (Go) — In the game of Go, shape describes the positional qualities of a group of stones. Descriptions of shapes in go revolve around how well a group creates or removes life and territory. Good shape can refer to the efficient use of stones in outlining …   Wikipedia

  • Shape — The shape (OE. sceap Eng. created thing ) of an object located in some space refers to the part of space occupied by the object as determined by its external boundary abstracting from other aspects the object may have such as its colour, content …   Wikipedia

  • shape — I. verb (shaped; shaping) Etymology: Middle English, from Old English sceapen, gescapen, past participle of scieppan; akin to Old High German skepfen to shape Date: before 12th century transitive verb 1. form, create; especially to give a… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • SHAPE — Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers, Europe …   Military dictionary

  • shape-up — noun Date: 1940 a system of hiring workers and especially longshoremen by the day or shift by having applicants gather for each day s selection; also an instance of such hiring practice …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • shape up — verb Date: circa 1920 intransitive verb to improve to a good or acceptable condition or standard of behavior < shaping up at the gym > transitive verb to bring to a good or acceptable condition or standard of behavior …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Shape context — is the term given by Serge Belongie and Jitendra Malik to the feature descriptor they first proposed in their paper Matching with Shape Contexts in 2000cite conference author = S. Belongie and J. Malik title = Matching with Shape Contexts url =… …   Wikipedia

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