contour

Contour is the outline or shape of something. A shoe that fits well along the contours or shape of your foot is a good fit.

Contour comes from the Italian contorno meaning "to draw a line," which is precisely what you are doing when you trace the contour of something. A road that contours a mountain follows along its edge and a mattress that contours to your body, adjusts to your shape. You might buy the kind of shoes that are designed to contour or mold to the shape of your feet over time, in which case you'll have to break them in.

Definitions of contour
  1. noun
    a line drawn on a map connecting points of equal height
    synonyms: contour line
    see moresee less
    types:
    thalweg
    a line following the lowest points of a valley
    type of:
    isometric, isometric line
    a line connecting isometric points
  2. noun
    any spatial attributes (especially as defined by outline)
    synonyms: configuration, conformation, form, shape
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 27 types...
    hide 27 types...
    keenness, sharpness
    thinness of edge or fineness of point
    bluntness, dullness
    without sharpness or clearness of edge or point
    topography
    the configuration of a surface and the relations among its man-made and natural features
    lobularity
    the property of having lobules
    concaveness, concavity
    the property possessed by a concave shape
    convexity, convexness
    the property possessed by a convex shape
    angularity
    the property possessed by a shape that has angles
    narrowing
    an instance of becoming narrow
    curvature, curve
    the property possessed by the curving of a line or surface
    roundness
    the property possessed by a line or surface that is curved and not angular
    straightness
    freedom from crooks or curves or bends or angles
    crookedness
    having or distinguished by crooks or curves or bends or angles
    stratification
    a layered configuration
    acuteness
    the quality of having a sharp edge or point
    obtuseness
    the quality of lacking a sharp edge or point
    hollowness
    the property of having a sunken area
    bulginess, roundedness
    the property possessed by a rounded convexity
    coarctation
    (biology) a narrowing or constriction of a vessel or canal; especially a congenital narrowing of the aorta
    taper
    the property possessed by a shape that narrows toward a point (as a wedge or cone)
    oblongness, rectangularity
    the property of being shaped like a rectangle
    triangularity
    the property of being shaped like a triangle
    globosity, globularness, rotundity, rotundness, sphericalness, sphericity
    the roundness of a 3-dimensional object
    cylindricality, cylindricalness
    the roundness of a 3-dimensional cylinder
    circularity, disk shape
    the roundness of a 2-dimensional figure
    curliness, waviness
    (of hair) a tendency to curl
    straightness
    (of hair) lack of a tendency to curl
    bottleneck, chokepoint, constriction
    a narrowing that reduces the flow through a channel
    type of:
    spatial property, spatiality
    any property relating to or occupying space
  3. noun
    a feature (or the order or arrangement of features) of anything having a complex structure
    “the contours of the melody”
    “it defines a major contour of this administration”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    characteristic, feature
    a prominent attribute or aspect of something
  4. verb
    form the contours of
    see moresee less
    types:
    streamline
    contour economically or efficiently
    type of:
    delineate, limn, outline
    trace the shape of
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week