1 (of a line, arc, or figure) form (an angle) at a particular point when straight lines from its extremities are joined at that point.But usually, when used in the humanities it is not a technical term like this. My objection is that it seems technical, as though it had a precise meaning, when it really just means underlie:
• (of an angle or chord) have bounding lines or points that meet or coincide with those of (a line or arc).
2 Botany (of a bract) extend under (a flower) so as to support or enfold it.
• be the cause or basis of (something) : the fundamental issue that underlies the conflict | [as adj. ] ( underlying) the underlying causes of poverty and drug addiction.Generalizing, this objection pertains to any such pseudo-technical usage. Do not write in a way that makes you a parody of the sort of writing you are doing.