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

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 Ultra-Orthodox rabbis instruct their followers to preserve tradition and social conformity, while modern art is often transgressive. Washington Post, 6 Jan. 2022 Lawmakers could instruct the IRS to spread the full credit over 11 months, authorize a double payment for one month or pursue some other approach. Richard Rubin, WSJ, 9 Dec. 2021 Using mRNA, scientists could instruct the body to build up its immunological defenses to find and kill cancers. Amy Webb, Wired, 1 Dec. 2021 Instead, the vaccines instruct our cells to manufacture SARS-CoV-2’s spike, a protein that normally decorates the virus’s surface, and parade those spikes in front of immune cells, partially simulating an infection. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 1 Dec. 2021 First, however, Judge Bruce Schroeder will instruct the jury for nearly an hour about the elements of the various offenses charged, and options to find Rittenhouse guilty of some lesser versions of the crimes originally charged. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 16 Nov. 2021 At their best, cookbooks can instruct, educate, entertain, and nourish us in surprising ways. Rebekah Denn, The Christian Science Monitor, 16 Nov. 2021 The rule does, however, instruct employers to require masks for unvaccinated workers by Dec. 5. Lauren Hirsch, New York Times, 4 Nov. 2021 Richmond Heights Kiwanis Club members instruct Key Club students about business, assist students with fundraising projects and show them how to make positive contributions to society. cleveland, 14 Oct. 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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Time Traveler for instruct

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near instruct

instroke

instruct

instructible

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Statistics for instruct

Last Updated

15 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Instruct.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/instruct. Accessed 17 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for instruct

instruct

verb

English Language Learners Definition of instruct

: to teach (someone) a subject, skill, etc.
: to give (someone) an order or command
: 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.

More from Merriam-Webster on instruct

Nglish: Translation of instruct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of instruct for Arabic Speakers

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