herd instinct



the impulse or tendency toward clustering or acting in a group, especially the presumed instinct toward or need for gregariousness and conformity.

Origin of herd instinct

First recorded in 1905–10
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for herd instinct

Historical Examples of herd instinct

  • There must be free thought, scepticism, diminution in the intensity of herd-instinct.

    The Problem of China

    Bertrand Russell

  • Weakening under the pressure, and swung by the power of herd-instinct, most of us "came."

  • The instinct which teaches the birds to build nests taught them to build huts; the herd-instinct drove them into tribes.

    The Pools of Silence

    H. de Vere Stacpoole

  • It is this "herd-instinct," too, which makes man so extremely sensitive to the opinions of the society in which he lives.

    Outwitting Our Nerves

    Josephine A. Jackson and Helen M. Salisbury

  • It is these that, with the power of the herd-instinct, press into the mind of the child, there fashioning and moulding it.

British Dictionary definitions for herd instinct

herd instinct


psychol the inborn tendency to associate with others and follow the group's behaviour
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