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Webster 1913 Edition


Nature

Na′ture

,
Verb.
T.
To endow with natural qualities.
[Obs.]
He [God] which
natureth
every kind.
Gower.

Webster 1828 Edition


Nature

NATURE

,
Noun.
[L. from nature, born, produced,]
1.
In a general sense, whatever is made or produced; a word that comprehends all the works of God; the universe. Of a phoenix we say, there is no such thing in nature.
And look through nature up to natures God.
2.
By a metonymy of the effect for the cause, nature is used for the agent, creator, author, producer of things, or for the powers that produce them. By the expression, trees and fossils are produced by nature, we mean, they are formed or produced by certain inherent powers in matter, or we mean that they are produced by God, the Creator, the Author of whatever is made or produced. The opinion that things are produced by inherent powers of matter, independent of a supreme intelligent author, is atheism. But generally men mean by nature, thus used, the Author of created things, or the operation of his power.
3.
The essence, essential qualities or attributes of a thing, which constitute it what it is; as the nature of the soul; the nature of blood; the nature of a fluid; the nature of plants, or of a metal; the nature of a circle or an angle. When we speak of the nature of man, we understand the peculiar constitution of his body or mind, or the qualities of the species which distinguish him from other animals. When we speak of the nature of a man, or an individual of the race, we mean his particular qualities or constitution; either the peculiar temperament of his body, or the affections of his mind, his natural appetites, passions, disposition or temper. So of irrational animals.
4.
The established or regular course of things; as when we say, an event is not according to nature, or it is out of the order of nature.
5.
A law or principle of action or motion in a natural body. A stone by nature falls, or inclines to fall.
6.
Constitution aggregate powers of a body, especially a living one. We say, nature is strong or weak; nature is almost exhausted.
7.
The constitution and appearances of things.
The works, whether of poets, painters, moralists or historians, which are built upon general nature, live forever.
8.
Natural affection or reverence.
Have we not seen, the murdering son ascend his parents bed through violated nature force his way?
9.
System of created things.
He binding nature fast in fate, Left conscience free and will.
10.
Sort; species; kind; particular character.
A dispute of this nature caused mischief to a king and an archbishop.
11.
Sentiments r images conformed to nature, or to truth and reality.
Only nature can please those tastes which are unprejudiced and refined.
12.
Birth. No man is noble by nature.

NATURE

,
Verb.
T.
To endow with natural qualities. [Not in use]

Definition 2022


Nature

Nature

See also: nature

English

Proper noun

Nature

  1. The sum of natural forces reified and considered as a sentient being, will, or principle.
    • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, chapter 4, in Mr. Pratt's Patients:
      Then he commenced to talk, really talk. and inside of two flaps of a herring's fin he had me mesmerized, like Eben Holt's boy at the town hall show. He talked about the ills of humanity, and the glories of health and Nature and service and land knows what all.
    • 1935, George Goodchild, chapter 1, in Death on the Centre Court:
      She mixed furniture with the same fatal profligacy as she mixed drinks, and this outrageous contact between things which were intended by Nature to be kept poles apart gave her an inexpressible thrill.

Anagrams

nature

nature

See also: Nature

English

Alternative forms

Noun

nature (countable and uncountable, plural natures)

  1. (uncountable) The natural world; that which consists of all things unaffected by or predating human technology, production, and design. e.g. the ecosystem, the natural environment, virgin ground, unmodified species, laws of nature.
    Nature never lies (i.e. tells untruths).
    • Thomas Macaulay (1800-1859)
      Nature has caprices which art cannot imitate.
    • 1891, Oscar Wilde, The Decay of Lying
      Nature has good intentions, of course, but, as Aristotle once said, she cannot carry them out. When I look at a landscape I cannot help seeing all its defects.
  2. The innate characteristics of a thing. What something will tend by its own constitution, to be or do. Distinct from what might be expected or intended.
    • 1920, Herman Cyril McNeile, Bulldog Drummond, Ch.1:
      Being by nature of a cheerful disposition, the symptom did not surprise his servant, late private of the same famous regiment, who was laying breakfast in an adjoining room.
    • 1869, Horatio Alger, Jr., Mark the Match Boy, Ch.16:
      Mark hardly knew whether to believe this or not. He already began to suspect that Roswell was something of a humbug, and though it was not in his nature to form a causeless dislike, he certainly did not feel disposed to like Roswell.
  3. The summary of everything that has to do with biological, chemical and physical states and events in the physical universe.
    • John Milton (1608-1674)
      I oft admire / How Nature, wise and frugal, could commit / Such disproportions.
    • 2012 January 1, Robert M. Pringle, How to Be Manipulative”, in American Scientist, volume 100, number 1, page 31:
      As in much of biology, the most satisfying truths in ecology derive from manipulative experimentation. Tinker with nature and quantify how it responds.
  4. Conformity to that which is natural, as distinguished from that which is artificial, or forced, or remote from actual experience.
  5. Kind, sort; character; quality.
    • John Dryden (1631-1700)
      A dispute of this nature caused mischief.
    • 1915, Emerson Hough, The Purchase Price, chapterII:
      Carried somehow, somewhither, for some reason, on these surging floods, were these travelers, of errand not wholly obvious to their fellows, yet of such sort as to call into query alike the nature of their errand and their own relations.
  6. (obsolete) Physical constitution or existence; the vital powers; the natural life.
  7. (obsolete) Natural affection or reverence.
    • Alexander Pope (1688-1744)
      Have we not seen / The murdering son ascend his parent's bed, / Through violated nature force his way?

Derived terms

Look at pages starting with nature.

Related terms

Translations

Verb

nature (third-person singular simple present natures, present participle naturing, simple past and past participle natured)

  1. (obsolete) To endow with natural qualities.

External links

  • nature in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
  • nature in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911

Statistics

Most common English words before 1923: cried · general · king · #361: nature · answered · thousand · looking

Anagrams


Esperanto

Adverb

nature

  1. naturally

French

Etymology

Borrowing from Latin nātūra.

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /na.tyʁ/

Noun

nature f (plural natures)

  1. nature
  2. (grammar) lexical category

Derived terms

Adjective

une brioche nature

nature m, f (plural natures)

  1. plain, unseasoned
    Une brioche nature ou sucrée ?
    File-moi un yaourt nature s’il te plait.
  2. bareback, raw dog
    Une fellation nature.

Italian

Noun

nature f

  1. plural of natura

Adjective

nature (invariable)

  1. natural

Anagrams


Latin

Participle

nātūre

  1. vocative masculine singular of naturus

Middle French

Etymology

Latin nātūra.

Noun

nature f (plural natures)

  1. nature

Descendants


Novial

Etymology

Latin nātūra.

Noun

nature (plural natures)

  1. nature

Old French

Etymology

Latin nātūra.

Noun

nature f (oblique plural natures, nominative singular nature, nominative plural natures)

  1. nature (natural world; nonhuman world)
    • circa 1170, Chrétien de Troyes, Érec et Énide:
      De cesti tesmoingne Nature,
      Qu'onques si bele creature
      Ne fu veüe an tot le monde.
      Nature can testify
      That never such a beautiful creature
      Was seen in the whole world
  2. nature (character; qualities)

Descendants