• (RP) IPA: /ˌiːvəˈluːʃ(ə)n/, /ˈɛvəluːʃ(ə)n/
  • (GA) enPR ĕv'ə-lo͞oʹshən, IPA: /ˌɛvəˈluʃ(ə)n/, /ˌivə-/


  1. A change of position.
    1. (military) A manoeuvre of troops or ships. [from 17th c.]
      • 1779, Frances Burney, Journals & Letters, Penguin 2001, p. 117:
        Major Holroyd, who acted as the General, was extremely polite, and attentive, and came to us between every evolution, to explain and talk over the manoeuvres.
    2. (now, chiefly, dance, sports) A turning movement of the body. [from 17th c.]
      • 1869, Anon., Miss Langley's Will:
        It was a critical instant: the pirouette -- it would fail, she feared. … the rapid whirl achieved in exact time, the whole evolution executed to perfection.
      • 1825, Theodore Edward Hook, Sayings and Doings: Passion and principle:
        … as he beheld the tenfold pirouette of a lovely girl, which presented to the public eye the whole of her form and figure; … to praise the dexterity and ease with which the unfortunate and degraded creature had performed the ungraceful evolution, the only merit of which, is the gross exposition of person, at which modesty shudders […]
      • 1863, Knightley Willia Horlock, The master of the hounds:
        "Look now, that pirouette -- my stars! how Beauchamp would stare to see his darling perform such an evolution!"
      • 1869, William Clarke, The boy's own book:
        By this operation each foot will describe an arc or segment of a circle. … This evolution is performed sometimes on one foot, sometimes on the other …
  2. An unfolding.
    1. (now, rare) The act or process of unfolding or opening out; the progression of events in regular succession. [from 17th c.]
      • 1801, Erasmus Darwin, Zoonomia:
        The world […] might have been gradually produced from very small beginnings […] rather than by a sudden evolution of the whole by the Almighty fiat.
    2. (geometry) The opening out of a curve; now more generally, the gradual transformation of a curve by a change of the conditions generating it. [from 17th c.]
    3. (mathematics, now, chiefly, historical) The extraction of a root from a given power. [from 17th c.]
    4. (chemistry) The act or an instance of giving off gas; emission. [from 18th c.]
  3. Process of development.
    1. Development; the act or result of developing what was implicit in an idea, argument etc. [from 17th c.]
      The ongoing evolution of Lolita subculture fashion includes, among other things, the ballet style.
      • 2005, Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth:
        Suffering has a noble purpose: the evolution of consciousness and the burning up of the ego.
    2. A process of gradual change in a given system, subject, product etc., especially from simpler to more complex forms. [from 18th c.]
      Among other forms of change, the evolution of transportation has involved modification, diversification, convergence, divergence, hybridization, differentiation, and naturally, selection.
      • 1976, Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene:
        There are some examples of cultural evolution in birds and monkeys, but […] it is our own species that really shows what cultural evolution can do.
    3. (biology) The transformation of animals, plants and other living things into different forms (now understood as a change in genetic composition) by the accumulation of changes over successive generations. [from 19th c.]
      • 1976, Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene:
        [Some books have] made the erroneous assumption that the important thing in evolution is the good of the species (or the group) rather than the good of the individual (or the gene).
Antonyms Translations Translations Translations
  • Russian: извлече́ние корень
  • Portuguese: evolução
  • Russian: перестрое́ние

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