• synonyms


[ap-i-tuh ns]
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  1. intense desire; strong natural craving; appetite.
  2. instinctive inclination or natural tendency.
  3. material or chemical attraction or affinity.
Also appetency.

Origin of appetence

1600–10; appete (obsolete) to seek for, long for (< Latin appetere, equivalent to ap- ap-1 + petere to seek) + -ence; or < French appétence
Related formsap·pe·tent, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for appetence

Historical Examples

  • For perception in any subject is vain, unless it can desire, and appetence is useless, unless it can move.

    North American Medical and Surgical Journal, Vol. 2, No. 3, July, 1826


British Dictionary definitions for appetence



noun plural -tences or -tencies
  1. a natural craving or desire
  2. a natural or instinctive inclination
  3. an attraction or affinity

Word Origin

C17: from Latin appetentia, from appetere to crave
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for appetence


"strong desire," c.1600, from French appétence "desire," from Latin appetentia "longing after something," noun of state from appetentem (nominative appetens), present participle of appetere, from ad "to" (see ad-) + petere "to seek, request" (see petition (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper