2. The representation of any form, as by drawing, painting, modeling, carving, embroidering, etc.; especially, a representation of the human body; as, a figure in bronze; a figure cut in marble. "A coin that bears the figure of an angel." (Shak)
4. <geometry> A diagram or drawing; made to represent a magnitude or the relation of two or more magnitudes; a surface or space inclosed on all sides; called superficial when inclosed by lines, and solid when inclosed by surface; any arrangement made up of points, lines, angles, surfaces, etc.
9. A person, thing, or action, conceived of as analogous to another person, thing, or action, of which it thus becomes a type or representative. "Who is the figure of Him that was to come." (Rom. V. 14)
10. A mode of expressing abstract or immaterial ideas by words which suggest pictures or images from the physical world; pictorial language; a trope; hence, any deviation from the plainest form of statement. "To represent the imagination under the figure of a wing." (Macaulay)
Figures are often written upon the staff in music to denote the kind of measure. They are usually in the form of a fraction, the upper figure showing how many notes of the kind indicated by the lower are contained in one measure or bar. Thus, 2/4 signifies that the measure contains two quarter notes. The following are the principal figures used for this purpose: 2/2 2/4 2/8 4/2 2/4 4/8 3/2 3/4 3/8 6/4 6/4 6/8 Academy figure, Canceled figures, Lay figure, etc. See Academy, Cancel, Lay, etc. Figure caster, or Figure flinger, an astrologer. This figure caster." Figure flinging, the practice of astrology. Figure painting, a picture of the human figure, or the act or art of depicting the human figure.
Origin: F, figure, L. Figura; akin to fingere to form, shape, feign. See Feign.
(01 Mar 1998)
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