Pronunciation: (mod"u-fi-kā'shun), [key]
1. an act or instance of modifying.
2. the state of being modified; partial alteration.
3. a modified form; variety.
4. Biol.a change in a living organism acquired from its own activity or environment and not transmitted to its descendants.
5. limitation or qualification.
6. Gram.
a. the use of a modifier in a construction, or of modifiers in a class of constructions or in a language.
b. the meaning of a modifier, esp. as it affects the meaning of the word or other form modified: Limitation is one kind of modification.
c. a change in the phonological shape of a morpheme, word, or other form when it functions as an element in a construction, as the change of not to -n't in doesn't.
d. an adjustment in the form of a word as it passes from one language to another.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

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