An example of alter is to cut a few inches off the bottom of a dress to make it shorter.
- to make different in details but not in substance; modify
- to resew parts of (a garment) for a better fit
- to castrate or spay
Origin of alterMiddle English alteren from Medieval Latin alterare from Classical Latin alter, other from Indo-European an unverified form al- (see else) + -tero-, comparative suffix
verbal·tered, al·ter·ing, al·ters
- To change or make different; modify: altered my will.
- To adjust (a garment) for a better fit.
- To castrate or spay (an animal, such as a cat or a dog).
Origin of alterMiddle English alteren from Old French alterer from Medieval Latin alterāre from Latin alter other ; see al-1 in Indo-European roots.
- al′ter·a·bil′i·ty al′ter·a·ble·ness
(third-person singular simple present alters, present participle altering, simple past and past participle altered)