American English

Definition of shape verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they shape
    he / she / it shapes
    past simple shaped
    -ing form shaping
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  1. 1[transitive] to make something into a particular shape shape A into B Shape the dough into a ball. shape something This tool is used for shaping wood.
  2. 2[transitive] shape somebody/something to have an important influence on the way that someone or something develops His ideas had been shaped by his experiences during the war. She had a leading role in shaping party policy.
  3. 3[intransitive] shape to do something to prepare to do something, especially hit or kick something She was shaping to hit her second shot.
  4. Idioms
    shape up or ship out (informal)
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    used to tell someone that if they do not improve, work harder, etc. they will have to leave their job, position, etc. He finally faced up to his drug problem when his band told him to shape up or ship out.
    Phrasal Verbsshape up
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: shape