component (n.)

1640s, "constituent part or element" (earlier "one of a group of persons," 1560s), from Latin componentem (nominative componens), present participle of componere "to put together, to collect a whole from several parts," from com "with, together" (see com-) + ponere "to place" (see position (n.)). Related: Componential.

Meaning "mechanical part of a bicycle, automobile, etc." is from 1896. As an adjective, "constituent, entering into the composition of," from 1660s.

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Definitions of component from WordNet

component (n.)
an abstract part of something;
jealousy was a component of his character
component (n.)
something determined in relation to something that includes it;
the smaller component is hard to reach
Synonyms: part / portion / component part / constituent
component (n.)
an artifact that is one of the individual parts of which a composite entity is made up; especially a part that can be separated from or attached to a system;
a component or constituent element of a system
spare components for cars
Synonyms: constituent / element