Definition of affect verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

        

    affect

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//əˈfekt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfekt//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they affect
    BrE BrE//əˈfekt//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfekt//
     
    he / she / it affects
    BrE BrE//əˈfekts//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfekts//
     
    past simple affected
    BrE BrE//əˈfektɪd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfektɪd//
     
    past participle affected
    BrE BrE//əˈfektɪd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfektɪd//
     
    -ing form affecting
    BrE BrE//əˈfektɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//əˈfektɪŋ//
     
     
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  1. 1  [often passive] affect somebody/something to produce a change in somebody/something How will these changes affect us? Your opinion will not affect my decision. The south of the country was worst affected by the drought. Which Word?affect / effect affect verb = ‘to have an influence on somebody/​something’:Does television affect children’s behaviour? It is not a noun. effect noun = ‘result, influence’:Does television have an effect on children’s behaviour? effect verb is quite rare and formal and means ‘to achieve or produce’:They hope to effect a reconciliation.
  2. 2  [often passive] affect somebody/something (of a disease) to attack somebody or a part of the body; to make somebody become ill/sick The condition affects one in five women. Rub the cream into the affected areas.
  3. 3affect somebody [often passive] to make somebody have strong feelings of sadness, pity, etc. They were deeply affected by the news of her death. Try not to let his problems affect you too much.
  4. 4affect (to do) something (formal) to pretend to be feeling or thinking something She affected a calmness she did not feel.
  5. 5affect something (formal, disapproving) to use or wear something that is intended to impress other people synonym put on I wish he wouldn't affect that ridiculous accent.
  6. Word Origin senses 1 to 3 late Middle English (in the sense ‘attack as a disease’): from French affecter or Latin affect- ‘influenced, affected’, from the verb afficere ‘work on, influence’, from ad- ‘at, to’ + facere ‘do’. senses 4 to 5 late Middle English: from French affecter or Latin affectare ‘aim at’, frequentative of afficere ‘work on, influence’, from ad- ‘at, to’ + facere ‘do’. The original sense was ‘like, love’, hence ‘(like to) use, assume, etc.’.Extra examples Her death affected him deeply. Hopefully this will not affect the outcome of the talks. Sales did not seem unduly affected. The class structure affects people’s attitudes and behaviour. decisions that affect all our lives developments that are likely to affect the environment factors affecting educational performance Education has been severely affected by the war. I wish he wouldn’t affect that ridiculous accent. Mrs Davis and her husband were profoundly affected by their experiences. The type of audience will affect what you say and how you say it. Your opinions will not affect my decision.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: affect