instance (n.) Look up instance at
mid-14c., "urgency," from Old French instance "eagerness, anxiety, solicitation" (13c.), from Latin instantia "presence, effort intention; earnestness, urgency," literally "a standing near," from instans (see instant). In Scholastic logic, "a fact or example" (early 15c.), from Medieval Latin instantia, used to translate Greek enstasis. This led to use in phrase for instance "as an example" (1650s), and the noun phrase To give (someone) a for instance (1953, American English).
instant (n.) Look up instant at
late 14c., "infinitely short space of time," from Old French instant (adj.) "assiduous, at hand," from Medieval Latin instantem (nominative instans), in classical Latin "present, pressing, urgent," literally "standing near," present participle of instare "to urge, to stand near, be present (to urge one's case)," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + stare "to stand," from PIE root *sta- "to stand" (see stet). Elliptical use of the French adjective as a noun.
instant (adj.) Look up instant at
mid-15c., "present, urgent," from Old French instant (14c.), from Latin instantem (nominative instans) "pressing, urgent," literally "standing near" (see instant (n.)). Meaning "now, present" is from 1540s, and led to the use of the word in dating of correspondence, in reference to the current month, often abbreviated inst. and persisting at least into the mid-19c. Thus 16th inst. means "sixteenth of the current month." Sense of "immediately" is from 1590s. Of foods, by 1912. Televised sports instant replay attested by 1965. Instant messaging attested by 1994.
instantaneous (adj.) Look up instantaneous at
1640s (implied in instantaneously), formed in English from Medieval Latin *instantaneus, from instantem (see instant (n.)) on model of spontaneous. Related: Instantaneousness.
instantiate (v.) Look up instantiate at
1946, from instant (Latin instantia) + -ate. Related: Instantiated; instantiation.
instantly (adv.) Look up instantly at
late 15c., "urgently, persistently," from instant (adj.) + -ly (2). Meaning "immediately" is 1550s.
instate (v.) Look up instate at
"to put someone in a certain state or condition," c. 1600, from in + state (n.1). Related: Instated; instating.
instatement (n.) Look up instatement at
1670s, from instate + -ment.
instead (adv.) Look up instead at
1590s, from Middle English ine stede (early 13c.; see stead); loan-translation of Latin in loco (French en lieu de). Still often two words until c. 1640.
instep (n.) Look up instep at
mid-15c., apparently from in + step, "though this hardly makes sense" [Weekley]. An Old English word for "instep" was fotwelm. Middle English also had a verb instep "to track, trace" (c. 1400).
instigate (v.) Look up instigate at
1540s, back-formation from instigation or else from Latin instigatus, past participle of instigare "to urge on, incite" (see instigation). Related: Instigated; instigates; instigating.
instigation (n.) Look up instigation at
early 15c., from Middle French instigation and directly from Latin instigationem (nominative instigatio), noun of action from past participle stem of instigare "urge on, incite," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + *stigare, a root meaning "to prick," from PIE root *steig- "to prick, stick, pierce" (see stick (v.)).
instigator (n.) Look up instigator at
1590s, from Latin instigator, agent noun from instigare (see instigation). Fem. formation instigatrix is recorded from 1610s.
instill (v.) Look up instill at
also instil, early 15c., "to introduce (liquid, feelings, etc.) little by little," from Latin instillare "put in by drops, to drop, trickle," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + stilla "a drop" (see distill). Related: Instilled; instilling.
instillation (n.) Look up instillation at
1540s, from Latin instillationem (nominative instillatio) "a dropping in," noun of action from past participle stem of instillare (see instill).
instinct (n.) Look up instinct at
early 15c., "a prompting," from Latin instinctus "instigation, impulse," noun use of past participle of instinguere "to incite, impel," from in- "on" (see in- (2)) + stinguere "prick, goad," from PIE *steig- "to prick, stick, pierce" (see stick (v.)). Meaning "animal faculty of intuitive perception" is from mid-15c., from notion of "natural prompting." Sense of "innate tendency" is first recorded 1560s.
instinctive (adj.) Look up instinctive at
1610s (implied in instinctively), from Latin instinct-, past participle stem of instinguere (see instinct) + -ive. Related: Instinctiveness.
instinctual (adj.) Look up instinctual at
1841, from instinct (Latin instinctus) + -al (1). Related: Instinctually.
institute (v.) Look up institute at
early 14c., "to establish in office, appoint," from Latin institutus, past participle of instituere "to set up," from in- "in" (see in- (2)) + statuere "establish, to cause to stand," from PIE root *sta- "to stand," with derivatives meaning "place or thing that is standing" (see stet). General sense of "set up, found, introduce" first attested late 15c. Related: Instituted; instituting.
institute (n.) Look up institute at
1510s, "purpose, design," from institute (v.). From 1540s as "an established law." The sense of "organization, society" is from 1828, borrowed from French Institut national des Sciences et des Arts, established 1795 to replace the royal academies, from Latin institutum, neuter past participle of instituere.
institution (n.) Look up institution at
c. 1400, "action of establishing or founding (a system of government, a religious order, etc.)," from Old French institucion "foundation; thing established," from Latin institutionem (nominative institutio) "disposition, arrangement; instruction, education," noun of state from institutus (see institute). Meaning "established law or practice" is from 1550s. Meaning "establishment or organization for the promotion of some charity" is from 1707.
institutional (adj.) Look up institutional at
1610s, from institution + -al (1).
institutionalization (n.) Look up institutionalization at
1911, from institutionalize + -ation.
institutionalize (v.) Look up institutionalize at
"to put into institutional life" (usually deprecatory), 1905; see institution. Related: Institutionalized. Earlier (1865) it meant "to make into an institution."
instruct (v.) Look up instruct at
early 15c., from Latin instructus, past participle of instruere "arrange, inform, teach," literally "to build, erect," from in- "on" (see in- (2)) + struere "to pile, build" (see structure (n.)). Related: Instructed; instructing.
instruction (n.) Look up instruction at
c. 1400, instruccioun, "action or process of teaching," from Old French instruccion (14c.), from Latin instructionem (nominative instructio) "building, arrangement, teaching," from past participle stem of instruere "arrange, inform, teach," from in- "on" (see in- (2)) + struere "to pile, build" (see structure (n.)). Meaning "an authoritative direction telling someone what to do; a document giving such directions," is early 15c. Related: Instructions.
instructional (adj.) Look up instructional at
1801, from instruction + -al (1).
instructive (adj.) Look up instructive at
1610s, from instruct + -ive. Related: Instructively; instructiveness.
instructor (n.) Look up instructor at
mid-15c., from Old French instructeur and directly from Medieval Latin instructor "teacher" (in classical Latin, "preparer"), agent noun from instruere (see instruct).
instrument (n.) Look up instrument at
late 13c., "musical instrument," from Old French instrument "means, device; musical instrument" (14c., earlier estrument, 13c.) and directly from Latin instrumentem "a tool, apparatus, furniture, dress, document," from instruere "arrange, furnish" (see instruct). Meaning "tool, implement, utensil" is early 14c. in English; meaning "written document by which formal expression is given to a legal act" is from early 15c.
instrumental (adj.) Look up instrumental at
late 14c., "of the nature of an instrument," from Old French instrumental, from Medieval Latin instrumentalis, from Latin instrumentum (see instrument). Meaning "serviceable, useful" is from c. 1600. Of music, c. 1500; noun meaning "musical composition for instruments only" is attested by 1940. Related: Instrumentally; instrumentality.
instrumentalist (n.) Look up instrumentalist at
1823, from instrumental in the musical sense + -ist.
instrumentation (n.) Look up instrumentation at
"composition and arrangement of music for instruments," 1845, from French instrumentation, from instrument (see instrument) + -ation.
insubordinate (adj.) Look up insubordinate at
1849, on model of French insubordonné (1789); from in- (1) "not, opposite of" + subordinate. Related: Insubordinately.
insubordination (n.) Look up insubordination at
1790, from in- (1) "not, opposite of" + subordination. Perhaps on model of French insubordination (1788).
insubstantial (adj.) Look up insubstantial at
c. 1600, from Medieval Latin insubstantialis, from in- "not" (see in- (1)) + substantialis (see substantial). Related: Insubstantially.
insubstantiality (n.) Look up insubstantiality at
1827, from insubstantial + -ity.
insue (v.) Look up insue at
obsolete form of ensue.
insufferable (adj.) Look up insufferable at
early 15c., from in- (1) "not, opposite of" + sufferable (see suffer). Related: Insufferably.
insufficiency (n.) Look up insufficiency at
1520s, from Late Latin insufficientia, noun of quality from insufficientem (see insufficient). Insufficience "deficiency" is from early 15c.
insufficient (adj.) Look up insufficient at
late 14c., from Old French insufficient (14c.), from Latin insufficientem (nominative insufficiens) "insufficient," from in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + sufficientem (see sufficient). Originally of persons, "inadequate, unable;" of things, from late 15c. Related: Insufficiently.
insula (n.) Look up insula at
Latin, literally "an island" (also, in ancient Rome, "a block of buildings"); see isle.
insular (adj.) Look up insular at
1610s, "of or pertaining to an island," from Late Latin insularis, from Latin insula "island" (see isle). Metaphoric sense "narrow, prejudiced" is 1775, from notion of being cut off from intercourse with other nations, especially with reference to the situation of Great Britain. Earlier adjective in the literal sense was insulan (mid-15c.), from Latin insulanus.
insularity (n.) Look up insularity at
1755, "narrowness of feelings," from insular + -ity. Literal sense attested from 1790.
insulate (v.) Look up insulate at
1530s, "make into an island," from Latin insulatus, from insula (see insular). Sense of "cause a person or thing to be detached from surroundings" is from 1785. Electrical/chemical sense of "block from electricity or heat" is from 1742. Related: Insulated; insulating.
insulation (n.) Look up insulation at
1848, "act of making (something) into an island," noun of action from insulate. Transferred sense attested by 1798. Electrical sense is from 1767. The concrete sense of "insulating material" is recorded by 1870.
insulator (n.) Look up insulator at
1801, agent noun in Latin form from insulate.
insulin (n.) Look up insulin at
1922 (earlier insuline, 1914), coined in English from Latin insula "island," so called because the hormone is secreted by the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas. Insuline was coined independently in French in 1909.
insult (v.) Look up insult at
1560s, "triumph over in an arrogant way," from Middle French insulter (14c.) and directly from Latin insultare "to assail, to leap upon" (already used by Cicero in sense of "insult, scoff at, revile"), frequentative of insilire "leap at or upon," from in- "on, at" (see in- (2)) + salire "to leap" (see salient (adj.)). Sense of "to verbally abuse, affront, assail with disrespect" is from 1610s. Related: Insulted; insulting.
insult (n.) Look up insult at
c. 1600 in the sense of "attack;" 1670s as "an act of insulting," from Middle French insult (14c.) or directly from Late Latin insultus, from insilire (see insult (v.)). To add insult to injury translates Latin injuriae contumeliam addere.