• WordNet 3.6
    • n alteration the act of making something different (as e.g. the size of a garment)
    • n alteration the act of revising or altering (involving reconsideration and modification) "it would require a drastic revision of his opinion"
    • n alteration an event that occurs when something passes from one state or phase to another "the change was intended to increase sales","this storm is certainly a change for the worse","the neighborhood had undergone few modifications since his last visit years ago"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The monogram "RR" for Rolls-Royce has never been altered, except for when Sir Henry Royce passed away in 1933. Then it was changed from red to black.
    • Alteration The act of altering or making different. "Alteration , though it be from worse to better, hath in it incoveniences."
    • Alteration The state of being altered; a change made in the form or nature of a thing; changed condition. "Ere long might perceive
      Strange alteration in me."
      "Appius Claudius admitted to the senate the sons of those who had been slaves; by which, and succeeding alterations , that council degenerated into a most corrupt."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: If you like your espresso coffee sweet, you should use granulated sugar, which dissolves more quickly, rather than sugar cubes; white sugar rather than brown sugar or candy; and real sugar rather than sweeteners which alter the taste of the coffee.
    • n alteration The act of altering; the making of any change; passage from one form or state to another.
    • n alteration A change effected; a change of form or state, especially one which does not affect the identity of the subject.
    • n alteration In mineralogy, the change by which one mineral substance is converted into another, either with or without change of chemical composition; as, for example, the change of the oxid of copper, cuprite, to the carbonate, malachite; or of brookite to rutile, both being forms of titanium dioxid. See paramorphism and pseudomorphism.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The alteration of the architectural appearance of a city by the construction of skyscrapers and high-rise buildings is known as "Manhattanization". The term refers to the New York borough Manhattan.
    • n Alteration change
    • ***


  • Virginia Woolf
    “These are the soul's changes. I don't believe in aging. I believe in forever altering one's aspect to the sun. Hence my optimism.”
  • William James
    “The greatest discovery of my generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind.”
  • Benjamin Disraeli
    “Characters do not change. Opinions alter, but characters are only developed.”
  • Phyllis Bottome
    Phyllis Bottome
    “There are two ways of meeting difficulties: you alter the difficulties or you alter yourself meeting them.”
  • Thomas Fuller
    “What cannot be altered must be borne, not blamed.”
  • Benjamin Franklin
    “Energy and persistence alter all things.”


Alter ego - An alter ego is a very close and intimate friend. It is a Latin phrase that literally means 'other self'.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Cf. F. altération,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. alter, another—al (root of alius, other), and the old comp. suffix -ter = Eng. -ther.


In literature:

Alter ad superna erigit, alter deprimit ad inferna.
"The Anatomy of Melancholy" by Democritus Junior
Unless periodically examined and properly trimmed, its shape is liable to serious alteration.
"Diseases of the Horse's Foot" by Harry Caulton Reeks
But this state of things had been very much altered since the abolition of slavery.
"The Anti-Slavery Examiner, Omnibus" by American Anti-Slavery Society
Mayhap you may think it is a weakness, but I do not desire to see it altered.
"Caleb Williams" by William Godwin
Everywhere the man who alters things begins by liking things.
"All Things Considered" by G. K. Chesterton
It seemed to himself that his very mind and spirit were altered.
"John Caldigate" by Anthony Trollope
In no detail did he alter, nor in a muscle.
"Where the Trail Divides" by Will Lillibridge
A visible alteration in the lady for the worse.
"Clarissa, Volume 7" by Samuel Richardson
Will you, Virtuous Men, allow no alteration of Offences?
"The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3" by Joseph Addison and Richard Steele
I shouldn't like to have the altering of her.
"Mr. Scarborough's Family" by Anthony Trollope

In poetry:

Grave mother of majestic works,
From her isle-alter gazing down,
Who, God-like, grasps the triple forks,
And, King-like, wears the crown:
"Freedom" by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Bitter for sweet no human hand can alter
Nor bid one sorrow pass,
With sudden stroke our darling little Walter
Was laid beneath the grass
"Lamentation" by Nora Pembroke
We pray, in hopes they will be kind,
As if they did regard our state;
They hear, and the return we find
Is, that no prayers can alter Fate.
"Songs Set To Music: 4. Set" by Matthew Prior
Forms have changed and words have altered,
But the things remain the same;
Still doth man enslave his brother,--
Always master, save in name.
"Discouragement" by John Lawson Stoddard
'Twas alter'd, and yet it was like
To some that in Summer had blown;
It was sadder and paler, methought,
Than those that I sometime had known.
"Reply To Being Asked To Paint A Flower In Winter, With A Forget-Me-Not" by Caroline Fry
We came over the moor-top
Through air streaming and green-lit,
Stone farms foundering in it,
Valleys of grass altering
In a light neither dawn
"The Great Carbuncle" by Sylvia Plath

In news:

NCAA Won't Alter Marijuana Rule After States Decriminalize Use.
The play altered momentum and caused the Cubs to unravel.
That event unleashed a gush of oil into the Gulf of Mexico, creating an environmental catastrophe and forever altering life along those shores.
There are two kinds of people: Ones who look forward to going home for holidays and ones who don't abuse their mood altering medications.
This sound is altered and amplified by the nasal cavity, throat and mouth to form a person's distinct voice.
Don't Alter Rape Law Because of Smith Case.
It's the "Gropez Line" — a tiny, newly altered boundary in the City Council district map that helps lecherous Assemblyman Vito Lopez but also brings potential political.
Out of all of the songs in this mix 'Payphone' from Maroon Five is the most altered.
Desert Debate: Reid and Angle Do Little to Alter the Race.
From babydolls to high-waist panties, Dollhouse Bettie is stocked with the kind of persona-altering vintage lingerie that invokes the spirit of busty pinup babes like Bettie Page.
Jason Schwartzman — his television alter ego — with Ted Danson, center, and Zach Galifianakis in HBO's "Bored to Death.".
Peyton Manning drastically alters odds on XLVII.
Stay calm in any situation by learning the life-altering secrets of equilibrium .
Estrogenic EDCs can alter the normal levels of the hormone estrogen in humans and wildlife populations.
Inventor's silicon chips alter the future.

In science:

Here, we omit the normalization coefficient before the integral since it does not alter the behaviour of system near critical point.
Critical properties of random anisotropy magnets
The dynamics is an iterative process because flipping of a spin alters the net field on its neighbors, and may necessitate the flipping of neighbors and their neighbors.
Hysteresis in Ferromagnetic Random Field Ising Model with an Arbitrary Initial State
The conclusion is not altered by the introduction of a cosmological constant in the FLRW regions.
No Swiss-cheese universe on the brane
The duality rotation (7) for a complex unit parameter |b| = 1 changes the type of electromagnetic field not altering the metric line element.
Weyl metrics and the generating conjecture
We note, however, that by altering the size of the bit stream downward (say n = 10, 000), we have been able to cause the von Neumann de-skewed variant to fail the runs test.
Random Numbers from Astronomical Imaging