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na•ture



Pronunciation: (nā'chur), [key]
n.
1. the material world, esp. as surrounding humankind and existing independently of human activities.
2. the natural world as it exists without human beings or civilization.
3. the elements of the natural world, as mountains, trees, animals, or rivers.
4. natural scenery.
5. the universe, with all its phenomena.
6. the sum total of the forces at work throughout the universe.
7. reality, as distinguished from any effect of art: a portrait true to nature.
8. the particular combination of qualities belonging to a person, animal, thing, or class by birth, origin, or constitution; native or inherent character: human nature.
9. the instincts or inherent tendencies directing conduct: a man of good nature.
10. character, kind, or sort: two books of the same nature.
11. characteristic disposition; temperament: a self-willed nature; an evil nature.
12. the original, natural, uncivilized condition of humankind.
13. the biological functions or the urges to satisfy their requirements.
14. a primitive, wild condition; an uncultivated state.
15. a simple, uncluttered mode of life without the conveniences or distractions of civilization: a return to nature.
16. (cap., italics) a prose work (1836), by Ralph Waldo Emerson, expounding transcendentalism.
17. Theol.the moral state as unaffected by grace.
18. by nature, as a result of inborn or inherent qualities; innately: She is by nature a kindhearted person.
19. in a state of nature,
a. in an uncivilized or uncultured condition.
b. without clothes; nude; naked.
20. of or in the nature of, having the character or qualities of: in the nature of an apology.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

natura non facit saltumnature study
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