nature

noun
na·​ture | \ ˈnā-chər How to pronounce nature (audio) \

Definition of nature

1a : the inherent character or basic constitution (see constitution sense 2) of a person or thing : essence the nature of the controversy
b : disposition, temperament it was his nature to look after others— F. A. Swinnerton her romantic nature
2a : a creative and controlling force in the universe
b : an inner force (such as instinct, appetite, desire) or the sum of such forces in an individual
3 : a kind or class usually distinguished by fundamental or essential characteristics documents of a confidential nature acts of a ceremonial nature
4 : the physical constitution or drives of an organism especially : an excretory organ or function used in phrases like the call of nature
5 : a spontaneous attitude (as of generosity)
6 : the external world in its entirety
7a : humankind's original or natural condition
b : a simplified mode of life resembling this condition escape from civilization and get back to nature
8 : the genetically controlled qualities of an organism nature … modified by nurture— E. G. Conklin
9 : natural scenery enjoyed the beauties of nature

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Choose the Right Synonym for nature

type, kind, sort, nature, description, character mean a number of individuals thought of as a group because of a common quality or qualities. type may suggest strong and clearly marked similarity throughout the items included so that each is typical of the group. one of three basic body types kind may suggest natural grouping. a zoo seemingly having animals of every kind sort often suggests some disparagement. the sort of newspaper dealing in sensational stories nature may imply inherent, essential resemblance rather than obvious or superficial likenesses. two problems of a similar nature description implies a group marked by agreement in all details belonging to a type as described or defined. not all acts of that description are actually illegal character implies a group marked by distinctive likenesses peculiar to the type. research on the subject so far has been of an elementary character

Examples of nature in a Sentence

He devoted himself to the study of nature. That is a color not found in nature. Hunger is nature's way of telling you to eat. Gravity is one of the basic laws of nature. She's very competitive by nature.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Along the way, Gentry’s competitive nature drew him to the circuit. Amy Drew Thompson, orlandosentinel.com, "Committed to BBQ: Orlando area barbecue champs share stories of smoke and glory," 13 June 2019 Less outdoorsy: Get a glimpse of Illinois River nature from the comfort of The Spirit of Peoria, a riverboat that takes travelers on a number of excursions, including day trips, overnight excursions and themed cruises. Darcel Rockett, chicagotribune.com, "6 ways to celebrate Great Outdoors Month in Illinois," 13 June 2019 Molly’s chipper good nature is a start, but the role feels more sketch-comic than fully realized. Michael Phillips, Detroit Free Press, "Emma Thompson outstanding, but ‘Late Night’ disappoints," 13 June 2019 Perks include the Zen Den, a room with yoga mats and nature sounds provided to employees for meditation and relaxation, massage chairs and BBB Bikes for staff to check out on non-work times. Leigh Farr, azcentral, "MEDIUM COMPANY RANKINGS:," 13 June 2019 Climb a black sand slope to the headland of Ingólfshöfdi, a private nature reserve where Iceland's first settlers landed. National Geographic, "Iceland Hiking Adventure," 12 June 2019 To preserve nature, the city requires every property to feature at least 65% green space, so building a mansion surrounded by amenities requires a lot of land. Jack Flemming, latimes.com, "Hidden Hills’ largest estate sells for record $22.2 million, topping Kim and Kanye West’s purchase," 11 June 2019 But the exact timing and nature of this power transition remains uncertain. Gabriel D. Wrobel, The Conversation, "Trophies made from human skulls hint at regional conflicts around the time of Maya civilization’s mysterious collapse," 10 June 2019 The truth is, there isn’t a universal truth about bitcoin’s nature, so a combination of speculative value and use value get wrapped into the cryptocurrency’s global price. Matthew De Silva, Quartz, "The rationalist’s case for buying bitcoin," 10 June 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for nature

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin natura, from natus, past participle of nasci to be born — more at nation

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More Definitions for nature

nature

noun

English Language Learners Definition of nature

: the physical world and everything in it (such as plants, animals, mountains, oceans, stars, etc.) that is not made by people
: the natural forces that control what happens in the world
: the way that a person or animal behaves : the character or personality of a person or animal

nature

noun
na·​ture | \ ˈnā-chər How to pronounce nature (audio) \

Kids Definition of nature

1 : the physical world and everything in it It is one of the most beautiful creatures found in nature.
2 : natural scenery or surroundings We took a hike to enjoy nature.
3 : the basic character of a person or thing Scientists studied the nature of the new substance.
4 : natural feelings : disposition, temperament She has a generous nature.
5 : sort entry 1 sense 1, type What is the nature of your problem?

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Comments on nature

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incapable of being surmounted or overcome

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