Definition of evolve in English:



  • 1Develop gradually, especially from a simple to a more complex form.

    [no object] ‘the company has evolved into a major chemical manufacturer’
    ‘the Gothic style evolved steadily and naturally from the Romanesque’
    [with object] ‘each school must evolve its own way of working’
    • ‘Having now evolved into a mature form, the Asian way no longer appears as the glaring parody it once seemed in bygone eras.’
    • ‘What I inherited from him was a love and knowledge of the countryside which evolved into a more conscious environmentalism.’
    • ‘Trains on railways such as these moved slowly, and the footpaths alongside them gradually evolved into roads.’
    • ‘By the next week it had evolved into something I had hoped I might never see again.’
    • ‘What started as a very limited levy has evolved into the federal government's main source of cash.’
    • ‘By the 17th century, they had evolved into a number of distinct clans.’
    • ‘Gradually the notion of consent evolved into informed consent, with the emphasis being on information about risks.’
    • ‘What began as a joke evolved into a plan to capture a camcorder keepsake of their trip - then turned into a widescreen spectacular.’
    • ‘By the 17th century, the simple knot garden had evolved into designs as complicated as those of embroidered cloth.’
    • ‘The delicate ceramic pieces began with a simple meaning and gradually evolved into something deeper.’
    • ‘Often my films have started in one place and evolved into something very different.’
    • ‘It could have evolved into a prize sometimes given to mathematicians and sometimes computer scientists.’
    • ‘But with the growth of bowling infrastructure over the years, it has evolved into a popular sport.’
    • ‘Deference to the prime minister has evolved into properly aggressive reporting.’
    • ‘Other cafes evolved into centres for the arts and sciences.’
    • ‘And somewhere along the way, the street-cool ethos of the zine has evolved into a lucrative retail format.’
    • ‘Gradually they evolved into plump stone discs with a handle protruding from the top surface.’
    • ‘His son Charles joined the firm at the age of 13 and the business gradually evolved into providing pet and garden supplies.’
    • ‘It looks like the playing field has evolved into a mine field, and the big boys encourage the new kids to play hopscotch there.’
    • ‘Some of the new names at past British Opens soon evolved into familiar names.’
    develop, progress, make progress, advance, move forward, make headway, mature, grow, open out, unfold, unroll, expand, enlarge, spread, extend
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    1. 1.1(with reference to an organism or biological feature) develop over successive generations, especially as a result of natural selection.
      [no object] ‘the populations are cut off from each other and evolve independently’
      • ‘He envisions society as an organism that evolves and develops by differentiation.’
      • ‘I'm a big believer in Darwin's theory that all life forms evolved from amoebae.’
      • ‘I believe it reinforces the inescapable conclusion that we evolved from single cells.’
      • ‘It is now thought that the genes for the rod and cone pigments evolved from a common ancestral gene.’
      • ‘Not one word is said about how single cells could evolve into a multiple-celled organism.’
      • ‘They evolved from a common ancestor but for both nations to play each other at all a hybrid set of rules has had to be devised.’
      • ‘By the late Oligocene, the two modern lineages of cetaceans had evolved from archaeocete ancestors.’
      • ‘If all organisms evolved from a single common ancestor, what do these groups actually represent?’
      • ‘Apparently the species evolved from Homo erectus, who somehow managed to reach Flores, perhaps by rafting.’
      • ‘But planes would still fly, and life still evolves through natural selection, common descent, and the known workings of genetics.’
      • ‘What does it mean to be made in God's own image if humans evolved from ape-like ancestors?’
      • ‘Man himself was not created as a separate species but evolved like every other organism by a process of evolution.’
      • ‘But not all scientists agree that life evolved from chemicals in the primordial soup.’
      • ‘The limbs of tetrapod vertebrates evolved from fins, with the digits as a novel feature.’
      • ‘At one end of the continuum we have the notion of a population of organisms evolving into something else.’
      • ‘How many times have truffle parasites evolved from cicada parasites in Cordyceps?’
      • ‘Evolutionary biologists call this phenomenon, in which an organism evolves just to stay in place, the Red Queen hypothesis.’
      • ‘Over millions of years these organisms would develop, adapt and evolve into newly created organisms.’
      • ‘The linkage between genes and behaviour is clear, but it did not evolve by natural selection.’
      • ‘Just because certain creatures may look similar does not mean they have evolved from a common ancestor.’
  • 2Chemistry
    [with object] Give off (gas or heat)

    • ‘Dimerization is usually required for proteins to evolve oligomeric proteins.’
    • ‘By convention, the change in heat is positive when the system absorbs energy and negative when the system evolves heat.’
    • ‘Tertiary amines dissolve in nitrous acid without evolving any gas.’
    • ‘Above 1500°F water vapor and the metal combine to form the oxide and evolve hydrogen.’
    • ‘The chemical reactions by which they do this evolve gas, which is why peas and beans cause wind.’
    emit, yield, give off, discharge, release, produce
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Early 17th century (in the general sense make more complex, develop): from Latin evolvere, from e- (variant of ex-) out of + volvere to roll.