Al"ter (#), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Altered (#); p. pr. & vb. n. Altering.] [F. alt'erer, LL. alterare, fr. L. alter other, alius other. Cf. Else, Other.]


To make otherwise; to change in some respect, either partially or wholly; to vary; to modify.

"To alter the king's course." "To alter the condition of a man." "No power in Venice can alter a decree."


It gilds all objects, but it alters none. Pope.

My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. Ps. lxxxix. 34.


To agitate; to affect mentally.




To geld.


Syn. -- Change, Alter. Change is generic and the stronger term. It may express a loss of identity, or the substitution of one thing in place of another; alter commonly expresses a partial change, or a change in form or details without destroying identity.


© Webster 1913.

Al"ter, v. i.

To become, in some respects, different; to vary; to change; as, the weather alters almost daily; rocks or minerals alter by exposure.

"The law of the Medes and Persians, which altereth not."

Dan. vi. 8.


© Webster 1913.