Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “necessity”

See all translations

necessity

noun uk   /nəˈses.ɪ.ti/ us    /-ə.t̬i/
C1 [U] the need for something: You can come early if you want to, but there's no necessity for it. [+ to infinitive] Is there any necessity to reply to her letter? The report stresses the necessity of eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. With a personal fortune of sixty million dollars, she certainly doesn't work out of necessity (= because she needs to). We'll employ extra staff to help out as and when the necessity arises (= when we need to).C1 [C] something that you need, especially in order to live: We brought only the bare necessities with us. He regarded music as one of life's necessities.
More examples
(Definition of necessity from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of necessity?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “necessity” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

lamb

a young sheep, or the flesh of a young sheep eaten as meat

Word of the Day

The way we move (Verbs for walking and running)

by Kate Woodford,
March 25, 2015
​​​ This week we’re looking at interesting ways to describe the way that people move. Most of the verbs that we’ll be considering describe how fast or slow people move. Others describe the attitude or state of mind of the person walking or running. Some describe both. Starting with verbs for walking slowly,

Read More 

stackin’ p

March 30, 2015
idiom slang earning a lot of money ‘That’s a very generous present.”Yeah, well, she’s stackin’ p, innit?’

Read More