- The definition of compose means to combine, to put something in order or to write a piece of music.
- An example of compose is form a flower arrangment from a combination of flowers, leaves and fruits.
- An example of compose is to line up a group of pictures by the date the picture was taken.
- An example of compose is to write a song.
transitive verbcomposed, composing
- to form in combination; make up; constitute: mortar is composed of lime, sand, and water
- to put together; put in proper order or form
- to create (a musical or literary work)
- to adjust or settle; reconcile: to compose differences
- to put (oneself, one's mind, etc.) in a state of tranquillity or repose; calm; allay
- to set (type)
- to produce (printed matter) as by computer, photocomposition, etc.
Origin of composeMiddle English composen ; from Old French composer ; from com-, with + poser, to place; meaning influenced, influence by Classical Latin componere: see composite
- to create musical or literary works
- Printing to set type
verbcom·posed, com·pos·ing, com·pos·es
- To make up the constituent parts of; constitute or form: an exhibit composed of French paintings; the many ethnic groups that compose our nation. See Usage Note at comprise.
- To make or create by putting together parts or elements.
- To create or produce (a literary or musical piece).
- To make (oneself) calm or tranquil: Compose yourself and deal with the problems logically.
- To settle or adjust; reconcile: They managed to compose their differences.
- To arrange aesthetically or artistically.
- Printing To arrange or set (type or matter to be printed).
- To create a literary or musical piece.
- Printing To set type.
Origin of composeMiddle English composen, from Old French composer, alteration (influenced by poser, to put, place) of Latin compōnere; see component.
(third-person singular simple present composes, present participle composing, simple past and past participle composed)
- To make something by merging parts. [ from later 15th c.]
- The editor composed a historical journal from many individual letters.
- Try to compose your thoughts.
- To make up the whole; to constitute.
- A church is composed of its members.
- (nonstandard) To comprise.
- (intransitive) To construct by mental labor; to think up; particularly, to produce or create a literary or musical work.
- The orator composed his speech over the week prior.
- Nine numbered symphonies, including the Fifth, were composed by Beethoven.
- It's difficult to compose without absolute silence.
- (sometimes reflexive) To calm; to free from agitation.
- The defendant couldn't compose herself and was found in contempt.
- To arrange the elements of a photograph or other picture.
- To settle (an argument, dispute etc.); to come to a settlement.
- To arrange in proper form; to reduce to order; to put in proper state or condition.
- (printing, dated) To arrange (types) in a composing stick for printing; to typeset.
OriginSee also: composé