proclivity

noun
pro·cliv·i·ty | \ prō-ˈkli-və-tē \
plural proclivities

Definition of proclivity 

: an inclination or predisposition toward something especially : a strong inherent inclination toward something objectionable

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Choose the Right Synonym for proclivity

leaning, propensity, proclivity, penchant mean a strong instinct or liking for something. leaning suggests a liking or attraction not strong enough to be decisive or uncontrollable. a student with artistic leanings propensity implies a deeply ingrained and usually irresistible inclination. a propensity to offer advice proclivity suggests a strong natural proneness usually to something objectionable or evil. a proclivity for violence penchant implies a strongly marked taste in the person or an irresistible attraction in the object. a penchant for taking risks

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Have you always had this leaning toward wanting to know about words and their etymologies? Maybe you even have a propensity to use the featured word several times in the course of the day—due, of course, not to a proclivity for pretentiousness, but because you simply have a penchant for using a rich vocabulary. And perhaps you have a predilection for using lots of synonyms, such as proclivity (from clivus, the Latin word for "slope"), referring to a tendency usually toward something bad; propensity, suggesting an often uncontrollable inclination; penchant, meaning an irresistible attraction; and predilection, which describes a strong liking derived from one's temperament.

Examples of proclivity in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In fact, a disorienting aspect of reading anything on middle children written prior to 2016 is that Trump is routinely cited as an example of the middle child’s proclivity for negotiation. Adam Sternbergh, The Cut, "The Extinction of the Middle Child," 11 July 2018 Divided by class and upbringing, yet remarkably similar in their tastes and proclivities, the brothers were like a case study in heredity versus environment. J.r. Jones, Chicago Reader, "Triplets ripped from family in a Nazi-like experiment, probed in Three Identical Strangers," 5 July 2018 Young is a clear option but makes less sense given those proclivities. Jeremy Woo, SI.com, "2018 NBA Mock Draft 9.0: Trade Speculation Heats Up," 10 June 2018 Indeed, so much more is taken into account, including sebum production, exposure to free radicals and proclivity for damage. Rebecca Norris, Allure, "Here's What Happened When I Tried a Fully Customized Hair-Care Regimen," 9 May 2018 These are, considering the show’s more dramatic proclivities, pretty banal issues. Rebecca Farley, refinery29.com, "The Fosters Series Finale Part 2 Recap: Never Sign A Pre-Nuptial Agreement," 6 June 2018 The family-friendly show will follow a teenager, Tony Toretto, who shares his cousin Dom's proclivity for fast cars. Tom Philip, GQ, "Netflix Is Making an Animated Fast and Furious Series," 23 Apr. 2018 The 20-year-old has always had a proclivity to punch above his weight. Atreya Verma, azcentral, "Elie Okobo eager for the challenges the Western Conference has to offer," 4 July 2018 Your child’s proclivity for spending all day playing video games could be more than just a nuisance. Mary Bernard, Philly.com, "WHO recognizes excessive video gaming as new mental health disorder," 21 June 2018

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

1561, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for proclivity

Latin proclivitas, from proclivis sloping, prone, from pro- forward + clivus slope — more at pro-, declivity

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Dictionary Entries near proclivity

proclisis

proclitic

proclive

proclivity

Proclus

Procne

procnemial

Statistics for proclivity

Last Updated

6 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for proclivity

The first known use of proclivity was in 1561

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More Definitions for proclivity

proclivity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of proclivity

: a strong natural liking for something that is usually bad : a tendency to do something that is usually bad

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occurring twice a year or every two years

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