Definition of compulsion
2 : an irresistible persistent impulse to perform an act (such as excessive hand washing) her compulsion to repeatedly check and recheck the stove to be certain that it is turned off; also : the act itself Gambling is a compulsion with him.
Examples of compulsion in a Sentence
I gave in to one of my compulsions and ordered the chocolate dessert.
We should be able to get them to cooperate without using compulsion.
Recent Examples of compulsion from the Web
To resist the compulsion to add to the pile-on and instead give others, particularly those incessantly shouted down or shouted over, the floor.
The wealthy also support cuts to government spending and social programs much more strongly than the rest of the public—which fits with their compulsion to spend millions on trying to buy academic legitimacy for unregulated capitalism.
Aggressiveness — unwillingness to share the road or a compulsion to command it — was cited as the No.
Fueled by time, money, and compulsion, competitive travelers dedicate their lives to going—literally—everywhere.
In Pennsylvania alone, some 124,000 people depend on Medicaid to help them in the hard battle to kick their compulsion.
There were plenty of family disagreements that stemmed from my compulsion to research every.single.thing before making a change to my toddler daughter's diet.
There have been attempts to cure the ills of smartphone compulsion.
Among patients with schizophrenia, those with severe polydipsia have a 75 percent chance of dying before patients without the compulsion to drink water, according to another study published in 2009 in Schizophrenia Research.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'compulsion'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of compulsion
Middle English, from Anglo-French or Late Latin; Anglo-French, from Late Latin compulsion-, compulsio, from Latin compellere to compel
First Known Use: 15th centurySee Words from the same year
COMPULSION Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of compulsion for English Language Learners
: a very strong desire to do something
: the act of using force or pressure to make someone do something
: the state of being forced to do something
COMPULSION Defined for Kids
Definition of compulsion for Students
1 : a very strong urge to do something He felt a compulsion to say something.
2 : a force that makes someone do something She was acting under compulsion.
3 : an act or the state of forcing an action They got what they wanted through compulsion.
Additional Notes on compulsion
Compulsion can make a contract voidable or be a ground for damages or restitution. Compulsion may also be a defense to a criminal act.
Learn More about compulsion
See words that rhyme with compulsion Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for compulsion Spanish Central: Translation of compulsion Nglish: Translation of compulsion for Spanish speakers Britannica English: Translation of compulsion for Arabic speakers Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about compulsion
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