American English

Definition of nature noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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    plants, animals
  1. 1Nature [uncountable] all the plants, animals, and things that exist in the universe that are not made by people the beauties of nature man-made substances not found in nature nature conservation You cannot use “the nature” in this meaning:the beauties of the nature. It is often better to use another appropriate word, for example the countryside, the scenery, or the wildlife:We stopped to admire the scenery.We stopped to admire the nature.
  2. 2Nature [uncountable] the way that things happen in the physical world when it is not controlled by people the forces/laws of nature Just let nature take its course. Her illness was Nature's way of telling her to do less. see also Mother Nature
  3. character
  4. 3[countable, uncountable] the usual way that a person or an animal behaves that is part of their character It's not in his nature to be unkind. She is very sensitive by nature. We appealed to his better nature (= his kindness). see also good nature, human nature, second nature
  5. basic qualities
  6. 4[singular, uncountable] the basic qualities of a thing the changing nature of society It's difficult to define the exact nature of the problem. My work is very specialized in nature. The future by its very nature is uncertain.
  7. type/kind
  8. 5[singular] a type or kind of something books of a scientific nature Don't worry about things of that nature.
  9. -natured
  10. 6(in adjectives) having the type of character or quality mentioned a good-natured man
  11. Word Familynature nounnatural adjective (unnatural)naturally adverb (unnaturally)nature nounnatural adjective (unnatural)naturally adverb (unnaturally)Idioms
    against nature
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    not natural; not moral Murder is a crime against nature.
    (get, go, etc.) back to nature
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    to return to a simple kind of life in the country, away from cities When you're camping, you can get back to nature.
    the call of nature (humorous)
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    the need to go to the bathroom
    the forces of nature
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    the power of the wind, rain, etc., especially when it causes damage or harm They were fighting a losing battle against the forces of nature.
    in the nature of something
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    similar to something; a type of something; in the style of something His speech was in the nature of an apology.
    in the nature of things
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    in the way that things usually happen In the nature of things, young people often rebel against their parents.