Pronunciation: (mu-shēn'), [key]
—n., v., -chined, -chin•ing.
1. an apparatus consisting of interrelated parts with separate functions, used in the performance of some kind of work: a sewing machine.
2. a mechanical apparatus or contrivance; mechanism.
a. a device that transmits or modifies force or motion.
b. Also called simple machine. any of six or more elementary mechanisms, as the lever, wheel and axle, pulley, screw, wedge, and inclined plane.
c. Also called complex machine. a combination of simple machines.
4. Older Use.
a. an automobile or airplane.
b. a typewriter.
5. a bicycle or motorcycle.
6. a vending machine: a cigarette machine.
7. any complex agency or operating system: the machine of government.
8. an organized group of persons that conducts or controls the activities of a political party or organization: He heads the Democratic machine in our city.
9. a person or thing that acts in a mechanical or automatic manner: Routine work had turned her into a machine.
10. any of various contrivances, esp. those formerly used in theater, for producing stage effects
11. some agency, personage, incident or other feature introduced for effect into a literary composition.
to make, prepare, or finish with a machine or with machine tools.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.