instruct

verb
in·​struct | \ in-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce instruct (audio) \
instructed; instructing; instructs

Definition of instruct

transitive verb

1 : to give knowledge to : teach, train
2 : to provide with authoritative information or advice the judge instructed the jury
3 : to give an order or command to : direct

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Choose the Right Synonym for instruct

teach, instruct, educate, train, discipline, school mean to cause to acquire knowledge or skill. teach applies to any manner of imparting information or skill so that others may learn. taught us a lot about our planet instruct suggests methodical or formal teaching. instructs raw recruits in military drill educate implies development of the mind. more things than formal schooling serve to educate a person train stresses instruction and drill with a specific end in view. trained foreign pilots to operate the new aircraft discipline implies training in habits of order and precision. a disciplined mind school implies training or disciplining especially in what is hard to master. schooled the horse in five gaits

command, order, bid, enjoin, direct, instruct, charge mean to issue orders. command and order imply authority and usually some degree of formality and impersonality. command stresses official exercise of authority. a general commanding troops order may suggest peremptory or arbitrary exercise. ordered his employees about bid suggests giving orders peremptorily (as to children or servants). she bade him be seated enjoin implies giving an order or direction authoritatively and urgently and often with admonition or solicitude. a sign enjoining patrons to be quiet direct and instruct both connote expectation of obedience and usually concern specific points of procedure or method, instruct sometimes implying greater explicitness or formality. directed her assistant to hold all calls the judge instructed the jury to ignore the remark charge adds to enjoin an implication of imposing as a duty or responsibility. charged by the President with a secret mission

Examples of instruct in a Sentence

She instructed us that we were to remain in our seats. The judge instructed the jury that they should disregard the testimony of the last witness. She advised him to instruct a solicitor.
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Recent Examples on the Web The idea for both vaccines was to introduce mRNA into the body that would briefly instruct human cells to produce the coronavirus’s spike protein. Gina Kolata, New York Times, 8 Apr. 2021 Equally important is for parents to instruct children to appreciate the damage that ingratitude can cause. Washington Post, 10 Dec. 2020 Two employees said DeJoy would then instruct that bonus payments be boosted to help defray the cost of their contributions. BostonGlobe.com, 3 June 2021 While managers guide, oversee and instruct, leaders inspire, innovate and motivate. Imperial Business Insights, Forbes, 18 May 2021 These pages include the forms themselves and documents that instruct users on how to use them. ProPublica, 19 Apr. 2021 MiMi Aung, the Ingenuity project manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, told reporters at a recent press conference that the team will instruct the helicopter to make more daring flights. Marina Koren, The Atlantic, 19 Apr. 2021 This mechanism is harnessed by mRNA vaccines, which instruct the immune system to make antibodies against COVID-19's spike protein. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, 16 Apr. 2021 In 2018, the law changed to raise the penalties for doctors who instruct ghost surgeries. Yoonjung Seo And Julia Hollingsworth, CNN, 10 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'instruct.' 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 instruct

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for instruct

Middle English, from Latin instructus, past participle of instruere, from in- + struere to build — more at structure

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Learn More About instruct

Time Traveler for instruct

Time Traveler

The first known use of instruct was in the 15th century

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Statistics for instruct

Last Updated

20 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Instruct.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/instruct. Accessed 23 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for instruct

instruct

verb

English Language Learners Definition of instruct

formal
: to teach (someone) a subject, skill, etc.
: to give (someone) an order or command
law : to give an order or an explanation of a law to (a jury)

instruct

verb
in·​struct | \ in-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce instruct (audio) \
instructed; instructing

Kids Definition of instruct

1 : to give knowledge to : teach A tutor instructs him in math.
2 : to give information to I instructed him that school was closed.
3 : to give directions or commands to She instructed us to stay seated.

instruct

transitive verb
in·​struct

Legal Definition of instruct

: to provide (a jury) with explanation and directions regarding the law applicable to a case the judge instructed the jury that the plaintiff bears the burden of proof the jury was instructed to ignore the attorney's comments

intransitive verb

: to give instructions to a jury the trial judge refused to instruct on manslaughter— W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.

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