100 Words Every High School Graduate Should Know
by Editors of The American Heritage Dictionaries (Editor)
Plural: met·a·mor·pho·ses (mt'-môr'f-sz')
1. A marked change in appearance, character, condition, or function; a transformation: "I sought out the myths of metamorphosis, tales of the weaver Arachne, who hanged herself and was changed by Athena into a spider" (Jennifer Ackerman, Chance in the House of Fate).
2. Biology. Change in the form and often habits of an animal during normal development after the embryonic stage. Metamorphosis includes, in insects, the transformation of a maggot into an adult fly and a caterpillar into a butterfly, and, in amphibians, the changing of a tadpole into a frog.
[Latin metamorphsis, from Greek, from metamorphoun, to transform : meta-, meta- + morph , form.]
adjective met a·mor phic (mt'-môr'fk)
verb met a·mor phose (mt'-môr'fz' or mt'-môr'fs')
adjective met a·mor phous (mt'-môr'fs)