Definition of compulsion
2 : an irresistible persistent impulse to perform an act (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.
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 century
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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