1. the essential qualities or characteristics by which something is recognized
; - Example: "it is the nature of fire to burn"- Example: "the true nature of jealousy"
2. a causal agent creating and controlling things in the universe
; - Example: "the laws of nature"- Example: "nature has seen to it that men are stronger than women"
3. the natural physical world including plants and animals and landscapes etc.
; - Example: "they tried to preserve nature as they found it"
4. the complex of emotional and intellectual attributes that determine a person's characteristic actions and reactions
; - Example: "it is his nature to help others"
5. a particular type of thing
; - Example: "problems of this type are very difficult to solve"- Example: "he's interested in trains and things of that nature"- Example: "matters of a personal nature"
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Nature \Na"ture\ (?; 135), n. [F., fr. L. natura, fr. natus
born, produced, p. p. of nasci to be born. See Nation.]
1. The existing system of things; the universe of matter,
energy, time and space; the physical world; all of
creation. Contrasted with the world of mankind, with its
mental and social phenomena.
[1913 Webster +PJC]
But looks through nature up to nature's God. --Pope.
When, in the course of human Events, it becomes
necessary for one People to dissolve the Political
Bonds which have connected them with another, ans to
assume among the powers of the earth the separate
and equal Station which the Laws of Nature and of
Nature's God entitle them, a decent Respect to the
Opinions of Mankind requires that they should
declare the causes that impel them to the
Nature has caprices which art can not imitate.
2. The personified sum and order of causes and effects; the
powers which produce existing phenomena, whether in the
total or in detail; the agencies which carry on the
processes of creation or of being; -- often conceived of
as a single and separate entity, embodying the total of
all finite agencies and forces as disconnected from a
creating or ordering intelligence; as, produced by nature;
the forces of nature.
I oft admire
How Nature, wise and frugal, could commit
Such disproportions. --Milton.
3. The established or regular course of things; usual order
of events; connection of cause and effect.
4. Conformity to that which is natural, as distinguished from
that which is artificial, or forced, or remote from actual
One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.
5. The sum of qualities and attributes which make a person or
thing what it is, as distinct from others; native
character; inherent or essential qualities or attributes;
peculiar constitution or quality of being.
Thou, therefore, whom thou only canst redeem,
Their nature also to thy nature join,
And be thyself man among men on earth. --Milton.
6. Hence: Kind, sort; character; quality.
A dispute of this nature caused mischief. --Dryden.
7. Physical constitution or existence; the vital powers; the
natural life. "My days of nature." --Shak.
Oppressed nature sleeps. --Shak.
8. Natural affection or reverence.
Have we not seen
The murdering son ascend his parent's bed,
Through violated nature force his way? --Pope.
9. Constitution or quality of mind or character.
A born devil, on whose nature
Nurture can never stick. --Shak.
That reverence which is due to a superior nature.
Good nature, Ill nature. see under Good and Ill.
In a state of nature.
(a) Naked as when born; nude.
(b) In a condition of sin; unregenerate.
(c) Untamed; uncivilized.
Nature printing, a process of printing from metallic or
other plates which have received an impression, as by
heavy pressure, of an object such as a leaf, lace, or the
Nature worship, the worship of the personified powers of
To pay the debt of nature, to die.
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Nature \Na"ture\, v. t.
To endow with natural qualities. [Obs.]
He [God] which natureth every kind. --Gower.
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):
n 1: the essential qualities or characteristics by which
something is recognized; "it is the nature of fire to
burn"; "the true nature of jealousy"
2: a causal agent creating and controlling things in the
universe; "the laws of nature"; "nature has seen to it that
men are stronger than women"
3: the natural physical world including plants and animals and
landscapes etc.; "they tried to preserve nature as they found
4: the complex of emotional and intellectual attributes that
determine a person's characteristic actions and reactions;
"it is his nature to help others"
5: a particular type of thing; "problems of this type are very
difficult to solve"; "he's interested in trains and things of
that nature"; "matters of a personal nature"
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:
243 Moby Thesaurus words for "nature":
Copernican universe, Einsteinian universe, Newtonian universe,
Ptolemaic universe, air, all, all being, all creation, allness,
anatomy, animus, aptitude, aroma, artlessness, atom,
atomic particles, attribute, attributes, badge, being, bent, bias,
blood, body-build, brand, breed, brute matter, building block,
by nature, cachet, cast, category, character, characteristic,
characteristics, chemical element, clan, class, color, complexion,
component, composition, configuration, conformation, constituent,
constituents, constitution, cosmos, countryside, crasis,
created nature, created universe, creation, cut, denomination,
description, designation, dharma, diathesis, differentia,
differential, disposition, distinctive feature, earmark, earth,
eccentricity, element, elementary particle, elementary unit,
environment, essence, essentiality, ethos, everything that is,
expanding universe, feather, feature, features, fiber, figure,
fire, flavor, form, frame, framework, fundamental particle, genius,
genre, genuineness, genus, grain, gust, habit, hallmark, hue,
humor, humors, hyle, hypostasis, identity, idiocrasy, idiosyncrasy,
ilk, impress, impression, inartificiality, inclination, index,
individualism, individuality, intactness, keynote, kidney, kin,
kind, label, leaning, line, lineaments, lot, macrocosm,
macrocosmos, make, makeup, manner, mannerism, mark, marking,
material, material world, materiality, matter, megacosm,
mental set, metagalaxy, mettle, mind, mind-set, mold, molecule,
monad, mould, natural man, natural state, natural world,
naturalism, naturally, naturalness, number, odor, omneity,
particularity, peculiarity, personality, persuasion, phylum,
physical world, physique, plenum, predilection, predisposition,
preference, primitiveness, pristineness, proclivity, propensity,
properties, property, pulsating universe, quality, quirk, race,
savor, scenery, seal, set, shape, sidereal universe, simplicity,
singularity, slant, smack, somatotype, sort, specialty, species,
spirit, stamp, state of nature, steady-state universe, strain,
streak, stripe, structure, stuff, style, substance, substratum,
suchness, sum of things, system, taint, tang, taste, temper,
temperament, tendency, tenor, texture, the four elements,
the like of, the likes of, token, tone, totality,
totality of being, trait, tribe, trick, turn, turn of mind, twist,
type, unaffectation, unaffectedness, unartificialness,
unassumingness, undisguise, unit of being, universe,
unpretentiousness, unspoiledness, variety, vein, virginity, warp,
water, way, whole wide world, wide world, wildness, world,
world without end
The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003):
See has the X nature.
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (18 March 2015):
has the X nature
(From Zen Buddhist koans of the form "Does an X have the
Buddha-nature?") Common hacker construction for "is an X",
used for humorous emphasis. "Anyone who can't even use a
program with on-screen help embedded in it truly has the
loser nature!" See also the X that can be Y is not the