Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “instinct”

See all translations

instinct

noun [C or U] uk   /ˈɪn.stɪŋkt/ us  
C2 the way people or animals naturally react or behave, without having to think or learn about it: All his instincts told him to stay near the car and wait for help. [+ to infinitive] Her first instinct was to run. It is instinct that tells the birds when to begin their migration. figurative Bob seems to have an instinct for (= is naturally good at) knowing which products will sell.
Translations of “instinct”
in Korean 본능…
in Arabic غَريزة…
in French instinct…
in Turkish içgüdü, doğal eğilim…
in Italian istinto…
in Chinese (Traditional) 本能,直覺…
in Russian инстинкт…
in Polish instynkt…
in Spanish instinto…
in Portuguese instinto…
in German der Instinkt…
in Catalan instint…
in Japanese 本能…
in Chinese (Simplified) 本能,直觉…
(Definition of instinct from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of instinct?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

More meanings of “instinct”

Definitions of “instinct” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

luck

the force that causes things, especially good things, to happen to you by chance and not as a result of your own efforts or abilities

Word of the Day

A certain je ne sais quoi: French words and phrases used in English

by Liz Walter,
January 21, 2015
It is an odd irony that the more sophisticated your use of English is, the more likely you are to use French words and phrases. Or, to be more accurate, ones you know to be French – words such as ballet, au pair, abattoir, fiancé, café, and restaurant are so entrenched in

Read More 

micro pig noun

January 26, 2015
an extremely small pig, bred to be a pet Micro pigs have become popular pets recently, with famous owners including Victoria Beckham, Paris Hilton and Olympic diver, Tom Daley.

Read More