verb (used with object)
- to cast back (light, heat, sound, etc.) from a surface: The mirror reflected the light onto the wall.
- to give back or show an image of; mirror.
- (of an act or its result) to serve to cast or bring (credit, discredit, etc.) on its performer.
- to reproduce; show: followers reflecting the views of the leader.
- to throw or cast back; cause to return or rebound: Her bitterness reflects gloom on all her family.
verb (used without object)
- to be turned or cast back, as light.
- to cast back light, heat, etc.
- to be reflected or mirrored.
- to give back or show an image.
- to think, ponder, or meditate: to reflect on one’s virtues and faults.
- to serve or tend to bring reproach or discredit by association: His crimes reflected on the whole community.
- to serve to give a particular aspect or impression: The test reflects well on your abilities.
- to undergo or cause to undergo a process in which light, other electromagnetic radiation, sound, particles, etc, are thrown back after impinging on a surface
- (of a mirror, etc) to form an image of (something) by reflection
- (tr) to show or expresshis tactics reflect his desire for power
- (tr) to bring as a consequencethe success of the project reflected great credit on all the staff
- (intr ; foll by on or upon) to cause to be regarded in a specified wayher behaviour reflects well on her
- (intr ; foll by on or upon) to cast dishonour, discredit, etc (on)his conduct reflects on his parents
- (intr usually foll by on) to think, meditate, or ponder
late 14c., “turn or bend back;” early 15c., “to divert, to turn aside, deflect,” from Old French reflecter (14c.), from Latin reflectere “bend back, turn back” (see reflection). Of mirrors or polished surfaces, to shine back light rays or images, early 15c.; meaning “to turn one’s thoughts back on” is c.1600. Related: Reflected; reflecting.
- To bend back.
- To throw or bend back light, heat, or sound from a surface.
- To think seriously.
- To send back a motor impulse in response to a sensory stimulus.