automatic

adjective
au·​to·​mat·​ic | \ ˌȯ-tə-ˈma-tik How to pronounce automatic (audio) \

Definition of automatic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : largely or wholly involuntary especially : reflex sense 5 automatic blinking of the eyelids
b : acting or done spontaneously or unconsciously the automatic applause of the audience
c : done or produced as if by machine : mechanical the answers were automatic
2 : having a self-acting or self-regulating mechanism an automatic transmission
3 of a firearm : firing repeatedly until the trigger is released

automatic

noun

Definition of automatic (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a machine or apparatus that operates automatically especially : an automatic firearm
2a : an automatic transmission a car with a three-speed automatic
b : an automobile with an automatic transmission Is your car an automatic or a manual?
3 American football : audible

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Other Words from automatic

Adjective

automatically \ -​ti-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce automatically (audio) \ adverb
automaticity \ -​mə-​ˈti-​sə-​tē How to pronounce automaticity (audio) , -​ma-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for automatic

Synonyms: Adjective

instinctive, instinctual, involuntary, knee-jerk, mechanic, mechanical, robotic, spontaneous

Antonyms: Adjective

nonmechanical

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Choose the Right Synonym for automatic

Adjective

spontaneous, impulsive, instinctive, automatic, mechanical mean acting or activated without deliberation. spontaneous implies lack of prompting and connotes naturalness. a spontaneous burst of applause impulsive implies acting under stress of emotion or spirit of the moment. impulsive acts of violence instinctive stresses action involving neither judgment nor will. blinking is an instinctive reaction automatic implies action engaging neither the mind nor the emotions and connotes a predictable response. his denial was automatic mechanical stresses the lifeless, often perfunctory character of the response. a mechanical teaching method

Examples of automatic in a Sentence

Adjective

Without thinking, he gave an automatic reply. She always has an automatic smile for everyone.

Noun

Will your next car be a manual or an automatic?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

As a result, their HRH titles are not automatic or guaranteed, but at the Queen's discretion. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Will Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Kids Have Official Royal Titles?," 6 Jan. 2019 Both of the gasoline engines are paired with a nine-speed Hydra-Matic automatic transmission; the diesel comes with a six-speed. Eric Bangeman, Ars Technica, "Review: GMC Terrain gives you the ride you want—at a price," 23 Dec. 2018 Both of those engines are hooked to Ford's excellent ten-speed automatic, which was codeveloped with GM and is showing up in its vehicles, too. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "Diesel Truck Battle (Non-HD): F-150 Diesel Vs. Nissan Titan XD," 25 Jan. 2019 The difference between an automatic and a semiautomatic effectively translates to firing hundreds of rounds a minute versus dozens or so in the same time frame. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The likely choices Tuesday would seem to be DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson and Woods, who were Nos. 9, 10 and 11 in points when qualifying ended for eight automatic berths after the PGA Championship. Jimmy Golen, The Seattle Times, "‘Mad Scientist’ DeChambeau claims 2nd straight FedEx Cup win," 4 Sep. 2018 The United States and Canada are heavy favorites for two of the three automatic berths from the Concacaf region. Steven Goff, chicagotribune.com, "U.S. women's soccer is one year from the World Cup. It seems closer for coach Jill Ellis.," 12 July 2018 For the third consecutive season, Edison had to face Marina in a play-in game for the Sunset League’s third and final automatic CIF Southern Section playoff berth. Andrew Turner, latimes.com, "Daily Pilot Softball Dream Team: Unexpected year from Kelli Kufta kept Huntington Beach strong," 8 July 2018 Six drivers have recorded wins, giving them a likely automatic berth in the 16-driver playoff grid. Mike Hembree, USA TODAY, "Summer stretch provides multiple paths on road to NASCAR playoffs," 30 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "The Trump administration just banned bump stocks for guns," 18 Dec. 2018 The gunman still may have carried out the shooting without bump stocks, but the devices made the shooting much deadlier by turning his semiautomatic weapons into guns that closely simulated automatics. German Lopez, Vox, "Trump administration to ban bump stocks for guns," 29 Nov. 2018 In 2006, 47 percent of new models in the U.S. were offered with automatics and manuals. Robert Duffer, chicagotribune.com, "The shift is on: Manual transmissions may be endangered but they're also beloved," 11 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'automatic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of automatic

Adjective

1686, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1870, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for automatic

Adjective and Noun

Greek automatos self-acting, from aut- + -matos (akin to Latin ment-, mens mind) — more at mind

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Statistics for automatic

Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for automatic

The first known use of automatic was in 1686

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More Definitions for automatic

automatic

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of automatic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

of a machine or device : having controls that allow something to work or happen without being directly controlled by a person
of a gun : shooting many bullets very quickly when the trigger is pulled
: happening or done without deliberate thought or effort

automatic

noun

English Language Learners Definition of automatic (Entry 2 of 2)

: a gun that shoots many bullets very quickly : an automatic weapon
: a vehicle that changes gears by itself at different speeds : a car with automatic transmission

automatic

adjective
au·​to·​mat·​ic | \ ˌȯ-tə-ˈma-tik How to pronounce automatic (audio) \

Kids Definition of automatic

1 : involuntary automatic blinking of eyelids
2 : being a machine or device that allows something to work without being directly controlled by a person an automatic washer

Other Words from automatic

automatically \ -​ti-​kə-​lē \ adverb

automatic

adjective
au·​to·​mat·​ic

Legal Definition of automatic

: happening or existing through the operation of a preexisting arrangement that is triggered by some event specifically : happening or existing through the operation of law automatic reversal an automatic appeal

Other Words from automatic

automatically adverb

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