Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

formation

noun
     
for‧ma‧tion W2
1P [uncountable]SSO the process of starting a new organization or group [= creation]
formation of
the formation of a new government
2 [uncountable] the process by which something develops into a particular thing or shape
formation of
the substances which lead to the formation of ozone
We now know a lot more about the early stages of planetary formation.
3 [countable] the way in which a group of things are arranged to form a pattern or shape:
troop formations
4

in formation

PM if a group of planes, ships, soldiers etc are moving in formation, they are flying, marching etc in a particular order or pattern:
a squadron of aircraft, flying in formation
5 [uncountable and countable]CF rock or cloud that is formed in a particular shape, or the shape in which it is formed
rock/cloud formation
the canyon's impressive rock formations
6 [uncountable and countable] technical society, politics etc seen as a system of practices and beliefs
social/political/cultural etc formation
Marx founded a new science: the science of the history of social formations.

Dictionary pictures of the day
Do you know what each of these is called?
What is the word for picture 1? What is the word for picture 2? What is the word for picture 3? What is the word for picture 4?
Click on any of the pictures above to find out what it is called.

Explore our topic dictionary