- 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.
Origin of instance
Examples from the Web for instance
They just reflect the range of breeds that were used to create the Heck cattle in the first instance.‘Nazi Cows’ Tried to Kill British Farmer
January 6, 2015
For instance, Best Buy has over 40 million members in its customer loyalty program, Reward Zone.Best Buy Punches Back at Amazon
December 27, 2014
For instance, how do you balance honesty with any protective urge?Daphne Merkin on Lena Dunham, Book Criticism, and Self-Examination
December 26, 2014
El Bulli, for instance, previously named the best restaurant in the world, shuttered its doors after only a few decades.Inside The World’s 10 Oldest Restaurants
December 20, 2014
This happens, for instance, in one out of five vaccinations against rubella.Uh Oh: Ebola Vaccine Trials Stop
December 19, 2014
Don't you think I might find some stored away in the cellar, for instance?Brave and Bold
For instance, take a concrete case; so best can we illustrate.'Tis Sixty Years Since
Charles Francis Adams
To Kate, for instance, she was a necessity of existence, like light or air.
I know that in Paris, for instance, I myself have no temptations.
When large shipments of gold were to be made, for instance, he was often warned beforehand.Way of the Lawless
- 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 (def. 4b)
- archaic motive or reason
- to cite as an example
Word Origin and History for instance
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).
Idioms and Phrases with instance
see under for example.