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development Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun act of improving by expanding or enlarging or refining
    • he congratulated them on their development of a plan to meet the emergency
    • they funded research and development
  2. noun a process in which something passes by degrees to a different stage (especially a more advanced or mature stage)
    • the development of his ideas took many years
    • the evolution of Greek civilization
    • the slow development of her skill as a writer
  3. noun (biology) the process of an individual organism growing organically; a purely biological unfolding of events involved in an organism changing gradually from a simple to a more complex level
    ontogenesis; maturation; ontogeny; growth; growing.
    • he proposed an indicator of osseous development in children
  4. noun a recent event that has some relevance for the present situation
    • recent developments in Iraq
    • what a revolting development!
  5. noun the act of making some area of land or water more profitable or productive or useful
    • the development of Alaskan resources
    • the exploitation of copper deposits
  6. noun a district that has been developed to serve some purpose
    • such land is practical for small park developments
  7. noun a state in which things are improving; the result of developing (as in the early part of a game of chess)
    • after he saw the latest development he changed his mind and became a supporter
    • in chess your should take care of your development before moving your queen
  8. noun processing a photosensitive material in order to make an image visible
    • the development and printing of his pictures took only two hours
  9. noun (music) the section of a composition or movement (especially in sonata form) where the major musical themes are developed and elaborated

De*vel"op*ment noun
Cf. F. développement.
  1. The act of developing or disclosing that which is unknown; a gradual unfolding process by which anything is developed, as a plan or method, or an image upon a photographic plate; gradual advancement or growth through a series of progressive changes; also, the result of developing, or a developed state.
    A new development of imagination, taste, and poetry. Channing.
  2. (Biol.) The series of changes which animal and vegetable organisms undergo in their passage from the embryonic state to maturity, from a lower to a higher state of organization.
  3. (Math.) (a) The act or process of changing or expanding an expression into another of equivalent value or meaning. (b) The equivalent expression into which another has been developed.
  4. (mus.) The elaboration of a theme or subject; the unfolding of a musical idea; the evolution of a whole piece or movement from a leading theme or motive. Syn. -- Unfolding; disclosure; unraveling; evolution; elaboration; growth.

Webster 1913