in·​stead | \ in-ˈsted How to pronounce instead (audio) \

Definition of instead

1 : as a substitute or equivalent was going to write but called instead
2 : as an alternative to something expressed or implied : rather longed instead for a quiet country life

Synonyms for instead


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Examples of instead in a Sentence

I was offered a ride, but I chose to walk instead.
Recent Examples on the Web Goop herself, Gwyneth Paltrow, hasn’t posted anything about it, instead using Instagram to celebrate designer Valentino Garavani’s birthday (happy birthday!). Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, 11 May 2022 Dorow agreed to cancel a May 13 preliminary hearing and instead scheduled a status hearing for May 18 to try again to untangle the issues. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 11 May 2022 Attention is, instead, drawn to mood, atmosphere and, most meaningful of all, motivation. Los Angeles Times, 7 May 2022 There is another local variety, Refosco Nostrano, or Faedis, whose peduncles are instead green. Susan H. Gordon, Forbes, 6 May 2022 The character isn’t based on a real person like the other leads, instead being a composite of many producers who worked at the station. Wilson Chapman, Variety, 5 May 2022 Top mower brand Ryobi, for instance, strongly recommends against using water to clean an electric mower and suggests using a blower or air compressor instead. Better Homes & Gardens, 4 May 2022 Adamson said the plan instead was to introduce a pay increase to be enacted for the next council, which begins its term in 2024. Amelia Pak-harvey, The Indianapolis Star, 29 Apr. 2022 Sony is also reportedly open to custom game demo releases, instead. Joshua Hawkins, BGR, 28 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of instead

1667, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for instead

Time Traveler

The first known use of instead was in 1667

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Statistics for instead

Last Updated

13 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Instead.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for instead


in·​stead | \ in-ˈsted How to pronounce instead (audio) \

Kids Definition of instead

: as a substitute I was going to write but called instead.

More from Merriam-Webster on instead

Nglish: Translation of instead for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of instead for Arabic Speakers


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