Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “reluctant”


adjective uk   /rɪˈlʌk.tənt/ us  
C1 not willing to do something and therefore slow to do it: [+ to infinitive] I was having such a good time I was reluctant to leave. Many parents feel reluctant to talk openly with their children. She persuaded her reluctant husband to take a trip to Florida with her.Unwilling and reluctantReady and willingLacking interest and enthusiasm
adverb uk   /-li/ us  
C1 She reluctantly agreed to step down as managing director.Unwilling and reluctantReady and willingLacking interest and enthusiasm
(Definition of reluctant from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of reluctant?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “reluctant” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day


a small company that makes beer, usually using traditional methods, and often has a restaurant where its beer is served

Word of the Day


Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More