[syn: evolution, organic evolution, phylogeny, phylogenesis]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Evolution \Ev`o*lu"tion\ ([e^]v`[-o]*l[=u]"sh[u^]n), n. [L.
evolutio an unrolling: cf. F. ['e]volution evolution. See
1. The act of unfolding or unrolling; hence, any process of
growth or development; as, the evolution of a flower from
a bud, or an animal from the egg.
2. A series of things unrolled or unfolded. "The whole
evolution of ages." --Dr. H. More.
3. (Geom.) The formation of an involute by unwrapping a
thread from a curve as an evolute. --Hutton.
4. (Arith. & Alg.) The extraction of roots; -- the reverse of
5. (Mil. & Naval) A prescribed movement of a body of troops,
or a vessel or fleet; any movement designed to effect a
new arrangement or disposition; a maneuver.
Those evolutions are best which can be executed with
the greatest celerity, compatible with regularity.
6. (Biol.) A general name for the history of the steps by
which any living organism has acquired the morphological
and physiological characters which distinguish it; a
gradual unfolding of successive phases of growth or
7. (Biol.) That theory of generation which supposes the germ
to pre["e]xist in the parent, and its parts to be
developed, but not actually formed, by the procreative
act; -- opposed to epigenesis.
8. (Metaph.) That series of changes under natural law which
involves continuous progress from the homogeneous to the
heterogeneous in structure, and from the single and simple
to the diverse and manifold in quality or function. The
process is by some limited to organic beings; by others it
is applied to the inorganic and the psychical. It is also
applied to explain the existence and growth of
institutions, manners, language, civilization, and every
product of human activity. The agencies and laws of the
process are variously explained by different philosophrs.
Evolution is to me series with development.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: 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" [syn: development,
evolution] [ant: degeneration, devolution]
2: (biology) the sequence of events involved in the evolutionary
development of a species or taxonomic group of organisms
[syn: evolution, organic evolution, phylogeny,
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
41 Moby Thesaurus words for "evolution":
addition, advance, approximation, beautification, change,
developing, development, differentiation, division, elaboration,
embellishment, equation, evolvement, evolving, extrapolation,
flowering, formation, growing, growth, integration, interpolation,
inversion, involution, maturation, multiplication, notation,
perfection, phylogeny, practice, production, progress, progression,
proportion, reduction, refinement, ripening, seasoning,
subtraction, transformation, unfolding, upgrowth