# Definition of prism in English:

## prism

Pronunciation: /ˈprizəm/

## noun

Geometry
1A solid geometric figure whose two end faces are similar, equal, and parallel rectilinear figures, and whose sides are parallelograms.
Example sentences
• Volumes of solids such as prisms, pyramids, tetrahedrons, wedges, cylinders and truncated cones are calculated.
• He goes on to consider solid geometry giving results on prisms, cylinders, and spheres.
• We will show that the area of this ring is equal to the area of the corresponding cross section of the dome, which implies that the dome and the punctured prism have equal volumes.
1.1 Optics A glass or other transparent object in prism form, especially one that is triangular with refracting surfaces at an acute angle with each other and that separates white light into a spectrum of colors.
Example sentences
• Newton applied the Method of Analysis to induce the explanatory principle that sunlight comprises rays of differing colours, and that each colour is refracted by the prism through a characteristic angle.
• When he passed a thin beam of sunlight through a glass prism Newton noted the spectrum of colours that was formed.
• According to Blondlot, a narrow stream of N-rays was refracted through the prism and produced a spectrum on a field.
1.2Used figuratively with reference to the clarification or distortion afforded by a particular viewpoint: they were forced to imagine the disaster through the prism of television
More example sentences
• It is most certainly distorted by the prism of your own arrogance and ignorance.
• So information about her youth is inevitably scarce, apart from her own memoirs, which are bound to be somewhat distorted through the prism of time.
• It's a good rule of thumb because seeing a given action through the prism of someone whose motives you are inclined to view favorably is a good check on unwarranted suspicions.

## Origin

Late 16th century: via late Latin from Greek prisma 'thing sawn', from prizein 'to saw'.

## Words that rhyme with prism

abysm, arrivisme, chrism, chrisom, ism, schism

Syllabification: prism

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## Related Words

### More words in this category

arc conjugate decahedron describe helicoid