Pronunciation: (kûrv), [key]
—n., v., curved, curv•ing,
1. a continuously bending line, without angles.
2. the act or extent of curving.
3. any curved outline, form, thing, or part.
4. a curved section of a road, path, hallway, etc.
5. Railroads.a curved section of track: in the U.S. the curve is often expressed as the central angle, measured in degrees, of a curved section of track subtended by a chord 100 ft. (30 m) long (degree of curve).
6. Also called curve' ball". Baseball.
a. a pitch delivered with a spin that causes the ball to veer from a normal straight path, away from the side from which it was thrown.
b. the course of such a pitched ball.
7. a graphic representation of the variations effected in something by the influence of changing conditions; graph.
8. Math.a collection of points whose coordinates are continuous functions of a single independent variable.
9. a misleading or deceptive trick; cheat; deception.
10. Educ.a grading system based on the scale of performance of a group, so that those performing better, regardless of their actual knowledge of the subject, receive high grades: The new English professor marks on a curve. Cf. absolute (def. 10).
11. a curved guide used in drafting.
12. ahead of( or behind)the curve, at the forefront of (or lagging behind) recent developments, trends, etc.
13. throw (someone) a curve,
a. to take (someone) by surprise, esp. in a negative way.
b. to mislead or deceive.
1. to bend in a curve; cause to take the course of a curve.
2. to grade on a curve.
3. Baseball.to pitch a curve to.
to bend in a curve; take the course of a curve.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.