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 There hasn’t been a model that associates quality with affordability, so most small-business owners create products that are prestige in nature. Rachel Krause, refinery29.com, "This Black-Owned Beauty Brand Is Now At Walmart — & Better Than Ever," 15 Feb. 2021 During an April interview with the French news channel CNews, Montagnier claimed that the coronavirus did not originate in nature and was manipulated. David Klepper, Chron, "The superspreaders behind top COVID-19 conspiracy theories," 15 Feb. 2021 During an April interview with the French news channel CNews, Montagnier claimed that the coronavirus did not originate in nature and was manipulated. David Klepper, Star Tribune, "The superspreaders behind top COVID-19 conspiracy theories," 15 Feb. 2021 Metals and mortals could both be made more pure by freeing that little bit of divine spirit hidden in nature. Meg Neal, Popular Mechanics, "The Eternal Quest for Aether, the Cosmic Stuff That Never Was," 10 Feb. 2021 All of this holds doubly true for financial companies, and companies San Francisco considers financial in nature, including online payments processors, lenders and the like. Owen Thomas, San Francisco Chronicle, "S.F. businesses will find remote and hybrid work are going to be taxing matters," 10 Feb. 2021 Richard Ebright, a professor of chemistry and chemical biology at Rutgers University, told the Washington Examiner in January that COVID-19 arising in nature or escaping through a lab accident were both plausible. Jerry Dunleavy, Washington Examiner, "WHO suggests it won’t continue looking into coronavirus Wuhan lab escape hypothesis," 9 Feb. 2021 In certain circumstances, this model perfectly mimics the behavior of more complicated systems in nature. quantamagazine.org, "Physicists Study How Universes Might Bubble Up and Collide," 25 Jan. 2021 One fundamental facet of pandemic fatigue is motivational in nature and is related to the demands life during a pandemic places on our systems for cognitive control and the mental effort costs this incurs. David Badre, Scientific American, "How We Can Deal with 'Pandemic Fatigue'," 24 Jan. 2021

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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Learn More about nature

Time Traveler for nature

Time Traveler

The first known use of nature was in the 14th century

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Statistics for nature

Last Updated

22 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Nature.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nature. Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

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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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