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tr.v. dis·tort·ed, dis·tort·ing, dis·torts
1. To twist out of a proper or natural relation of parts; misshape: a reflection distorted in the moving water; a face distorted in misery.
2. To cause to deviate from what is normal, reasonable, or accurate: "Though I knew how to translate exactly what she had told me, I realized that any translation would distort the deepest meaning of her message" (Richard Rodriguez).
3. Electronics To cause distortion in (a signal or waveform, for example).

[Latin distorquēre, distort- : dis-, apart; see dis- + torquēre, to twist; see terkw- in Indo-European roots.]

dis·tort′er n.
Synonyms: distort, twist, deform, contort, warp
These verbs mean to alter form or character, usually disadvantageously. To distort is to change the physical shape of something, as by torsion or exaggerating certain features, or to misconstrue the meaning of something: "The human understanding is like a false mirror, which, receiving rays irregularly, distorts and discolors the nature of things" (Francis Bacon).
Twist applies to distortion of form or meaning: He twisted his mouth in pain. She accused me of twisting her words. Deform refers to change that disfigures and often implies the loss of desirable qualities such as beauty: Erosion deforms the landscape. Contort implies violent change that produces unnatural or grotesque effects: "The body of the bird ... contorted suddenly. Its back arching; its head and tail straining to feel the touch of the other; its taloned feet grappling for a hold on a world that was gone" (Pete Dunne).
Warp can refer to turning from a flat or straight form or from a true course or direction: The floorboards warped over the years. His judgment is warped by prejudice.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Let us now investigate more systematically the importance of complementation for the ability of different distorter alleles to coexist.
In some groups, enforcement of cooperation is less "authoritarian." Maynard Smith and Szathmary explain how, among sexual organisms, a segregation-distorter allele which spreads a harmful phenotypic defect through a population by biassing meiotic segregation-ratio in its own favor, injures both the individuals carrying this allele, and alleles at unlinked loci which cannot spread in linkage with the distorter but which suffer from the damage inflicted on the vehicles for their replication.
The debut of the shoe line, designed by Toshinouke Takegahara (Foot The Coacher), consisted of Highgrounder, Platformer and Distorter models.
Ameristep (ameristep.com) ratcheted their ground-blind game up a level this year with the release of the Distorter ($300).
Drug addict Thorpe used a range of props - including an imitation pistol, voice distorter and a burka - in raids across south Manchester, Stockport and Cheshire.
When Odysseas declares someone a distorter of facts, we do not have to be told what the guilty man actually said because Odysseas' word is gospel.
The new Distorter ground blind from Ameristep uses kick-out technology to create a unique silhouette that blends in better than typical square blinds.
It is possible that this marker is located on a portion of a chromosome affected by a segregation distorter system, a powerful evolutionary force that can affect the frequency of certain genotypes, leading to the observed transmission ratio distortion (Lyttle 1993; Aparicio et al.
She pointed out that the intensive appearance of President Bashar al-Assad through interviews with various Arab and international media outlets is "to correct the image about the reality of the situation in Syria and convey it to the people in the world countries." Shban highlighted that the repeated appearance of the President comes at a time when Syria continues to face an intensive war of disinformation that includes falsification and distortion of facts contrary to the role of media as a conveyor not a distorter of the truth.
The distorter of placement, the chafer of necks, the twister of thumbs, but above all, the displayer of the ballerina's legs.
Growth plans by the brewery include packaging its Anger, Dunegras, Closure, Distorter, Brother Benjamin and Retribution brands.

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