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Webster 1913 Edition


Reflection

Re-flec′tion

(r?-fl?k′sh?n)
,
Noun.
[L.
reflexio
: cf. F.
réflexion
. See
Riflect
.]
[Written also
reflexion
.]
1.
The act of reflecting, or turning or sending back, or the state of being reflected.
Specifically:
(a)
The return of rays, beams, sound, or the like, from a surface. See
Angle of reflection
, below.
The eye sees not itself,
But by
reflection
, by some other things.
Shakespeare
(b)
The reverting of the mind to that which has already occupied it; continued consideration; meditation; contemplation; hence, also, that operation or power of the mind by which it is conscious of its own acts or states; the capacity for judging rationally, especially in view of a moral rule or standard.
By
reflection
, . . . I would be understood to mean, that notice which the mind takes of its own operations, and the manner of them, by reason whereof there come to be ideas of these operations in the understanding.
Locke.
This delight grows and improves under thought and
reflection
.
South.
2.
Shining; brightness, as of the sun.
[Obs.]
Shak.
3.
That which is produced by reflection.
Specifically:
(a)
An image given back from a reflecting surface; a reflected counterpart.
As the sun water we can bear,
Yet not the sun, but his
reflection
, there.
Dryden.
(b)
A part reflected, or turned back, at an angle; as, the reflection of a membrane.
(c)
Result of meditation; thought or opinion after attentive consideration or contemplation; especially, thoughts suggested by truth.
Job’s
reflections
on his once flourishing estate did at the same time afflict and encourage him.
Atterbury.
4.
Censure; reproach cast.
He died; and oh! may no
reflection
shed
Its poisonous venom on the royal dead.
Prior.
5.
(Physiol.)
The transference of an excitement from one nerve fiber to another by means of the nerve cells, as in reflex action. See
Reflex action
, under
Reflex
.
Angle of reflection
,
the angle which anything, as a ray of light, on leaving a reflecting surface, makes with the perpendicular to the surface.
Angle of total reflection
.
(Opt.)
Same as
Critical angle
, under
Critical
.
Syn. – Meditation; contemplation; rumination; cogitation; consideration; musing; thinking.

Webster 1828 Edition


Reflection

REFLEC'TION

,
Noun.
[from reflect.]
1.
The act of throwing back; as the reflection of light or colors. The angle of incidence and the angle of reflection are always equal.
2.
The act of bending back.
3.
That which is reflected.
As the sun in water we can bear, yet not the sun, but his reflection there.
4.
The operation of the mind by which it turns its views back upon itself and its operations; the review or consideration of past thoughts, opinions or decisions of the mind, or of past events.
5.
Thought thrown back on itself, on the past or on the absent; as melancholy reflections; delightful reflections.
Job's reflections on his once flourishing estate, at the same time afflicted and encouraged him.
6.
The expression of thought.
7.
Attentive consideration; meditation; contemplation.
This delight grows and improves under thought and reflection.
8.
Censure; reproach cast.
He died, and oh! may no reflection shed its pois'nous venom on the royal dead.

Definition 2022


reflection

reflection

English

Alternative forms

Noun

A water reflection - meanings 2 and 3

reflection (countable and uncountable, plural reflections)

  1. The act of reflecting or the state of being reflected.
  2. The property of a propagated wave being thrown back from a surface (such as a mirror).
  3. Something, such as an image, that is reflected.
    The dog barked at his own reflection in the mirror.
  4. Careful thought or consideration.
    After careful reflection, I have decided not to vote for that proposition.
    • 1959, Georgette Heyer, chapter 1, in The Unknown Ajax:
      But Richmond, his grandfather's darling, after one thoughtful glance cast under his lashes at that uncompromising countenance appeared to lose himself in his own reflections.
  5. An implied criticism.
    It is a reflection on his character that he never wavered in his resolve.
  6. (computing) The process or mechanism of determining the capabilities of an object at run-time.

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