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 Complicating matters for doctors is that the nature of the injuries is often far from clear. Kelly Servick, Science | AAAS, "COVID-19 ‘brain fog’ inspires search for causes and treatments," 27 Apr. 2021 The nature is beautiful; the purchasing power of the money is still OK. Kit Gillet, The Christian Science Monitor, "Southern Europe’s brain drain reversed in pandemic. Will it last?," 26 Apr. 2021 But there should be a fact sheet that provides the information to everybody to understand what the nature is of this potential very rare side effect so that everyone is aware of the facts. NBC News, "Meet the Press - April 25, 2021," 25 Apr. 2021 The fits-and-starts nature of White’s season is most readily apparent in his shooting numbers. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, "San Antonio Spurs' Derrick White enjoying best month of career year," 24 Apr. 2021 What was the nature of Lionel Trilling’s relationship with Allen Ginsberg? Edward Rothstein, WSJ, "‘The Free World’ Review: Cold War Culture," 23 Apr. 2021 The nature of amplifiers is simple: some Grisha can utilize the bones or body parts of an animal in order to make their powers stronger. Rosie Knight, refinery29.com, "29 Essential Shadow and Bone Terms To Know If You Didn’t Read The Books," 23 Apr. 2021 The nature of sportswear itself is a category that lends itself to more sustainable offerings. Tonne Goodman, Vogue, "Then and Now with Tonne Goodman–Shop Sustainable Sportswear for a Seriously Modern Look," 23 Apr. 2021 The specific nature of that progress, however, is very much yet to be determined, particularly on Capitol Hill, where Democrats and Republicans are actually working together to find a compromise piece of legislation. CNN, "What could Congress actually accomplish on police reform?," 22 Apr. 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

5 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Nature.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/nature. Accessed 7 May. 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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