- manner of behaving or acting.
- Psychology, Animal Behavior.
- observable activity in a human or animal.
- the aggregate of responses to internal and external stimuli.
- a stereotyped, species-specific activity, as a courtship dance or startle reflex.
- Often behaviors. a behavior pattern.
- the action or reaction of any material under given circumstances: the behavior of tin under heat.
Also especially British, be·hav·iour.
Origin of behavior
SynonymsSee more synonyms for behavior on Thesaurus.com
1. demeanor, manners; bearing, carriage.
1. Behavior, conduct, deportment, comportment refer to one's actions before or toward others, especially on a particular occasion. Behavior refers to actions usually measured by commonly accepted standards: His behavior at the party was childish. Conduct refers to actions viewed collectively, especially as measured by an ideal standard: Conduct is judged according to principles of ethics. Deportment is behavior related to a code or to an arbitrary standard: Deportment is guided by rules of etiquette. The teacher gave Susan a mark of B in deportment. Comportment is behavior as viewed from the standpoint of one's management of one's own actions: His comportment was marked by a quiet assurance.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for behaviour
But there is more to this behaviour than intentional amnesia.Beirut Letter: In Lebanon, Fighting ISIS With Culture and Satire
September 22, 2014
“His behaviour as a parliamentary candidate has brought the party into disrepute,” he said.British Candidate Receives Death Threats for Tweeting Prophet Mohammed Cartoon
January 23, 2014
It is my sincere wish that the new royal couple will feel, through your behaviour, loving trust.Dutch Queen Abdicates
April 30, 2013
[W]e can't repair the effects of past behaviour on our atmosphere as quickly and as easily as we might cleanse a stream or river.
The character and behaviour of plants would change, some for the better, some for worse.
He could not avoid contrasting this behaviour with his past preaching.
Knowing the Milbreys, you will divine the warmth of their behaviour toward the son.
This, I dare say, will make them alter their behaviour to you.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
There was nothing in her behaviour to indicate a consciousness of error from her sphere.Weighed and Wanting
All this time it was instructive to watch the behaviour of the little dog.The Roof of France
- manner of behaving or conducting oneself
- on one's best behaviour behaving with careful good manners
- the aggregate of all the responses made by an organism in any situation
- a specific response of a certain organism to a specific stimulus or group of stimuli
- the action, reaction, or functioning of a system, under normal or specified circumstances
C15: from behave; influenced in form by Middle English havior, from Old French havoir, from Latin habēre to have
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 behaviour
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- The actions or reactions of persons or things in response to external or internal stimuli.
- The manner in which one behaves.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
- The actions displayed by an organism in response to its environment.
- One of these actions. Certain animal behaviors (such as nest building) result from instinct, while others (such as hunting) must be learned.
- The manner in which a physical system, such as a gas, subatomic particle, or ecosystem, acts or functions, especially under specified conditions.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Idioms and Phrases with behaviour
see on one's best behavior.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.