a case or occurrence of anything:
fresh instances of oppression.
an example put forth in proof or illustration:
to cite a few instances.
Law. the institution and prosecution of a case.
Archaic. urgency in speech or action.
Obsolete. an impelling motive.
to cite as an instance or example.
to exemplify by an instance.
to cite an instance.
at the instance of, at the urging or suggestion of:
He applied for the assistantship at the instance of his professor.
for instance, as an example; for example:
If you were to go to Italy, for instance, you would get a different perspective on our culture.
a case or particular example
for instance, for or as an example
a specified stage in proceedings; step (in the phrases in the first, second, etc, instance)
urgent request or demand (esp in the phrase at the instance of)
an expression derived from another by instantiation
See substitution (sense 4b)
(archaic) motive or reason
to cite as an example
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).
see under for example
- At the last minute
At the latest possible moment or opportunity. For example, Jim couldn’t get a reservation because he had called at the last minute . Also see at the latest eleventh hour
- At the least
smallest in size, amount, degree, etc.; slightest: He gave the least amount of money of anyone. lowest in consideration, position, or importance. something that is least; the least amount, quantity, degree, etc. South Midland U.S. the youngest in a family or group. to the smallest extent, amount, or degree: That’s the least important question of […]
- At the mercy of
compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power; compassion, pity, or benevolence: Have mercy on the poor sinner. the disposition to be compassionate or forbearing: an adversary wholly without mercy. the discretionary power of a judge to pardon someone or to mitigate punishment, especially to send to […]
- At the most
in the greatest quantity, amount, measure, degree, or number: to win the most votes. in the majority of instances: Most operations are successful. greatest, as in size or extent: the most talent. the greatest quantity, amount, or degree; the utmost: The most I can hope for is a passing grade. the greatest number or the […]