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  1. occurring, done, or completed in an instant: an instantaneous response.
  2. existing at or pertaining to a particular instant: the instantaneous position of the rocket.
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Origin of instantaneous

From the Medieval Latin word instantāneus, dating back to 1645–55. See instant, -an, -eous
Related formsin·stan·ta·ne·i·ty [in-stan-tn-ee-i-tee, in-stuhn-tuh-nee-] /ɪnˌstæn tnˈi ɪ ti, ˌɪn stən təˈni-/, in·stan·ta·ne·ous·ness, nounin·stan·ta·ne·ous·ly, adverb

Synonyms for instantaneous

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for instantaneously

spontaneously, directly, immediately, pronto, quickly

Examples from the Web for instantaneously

Contemporary Examples of instantaneously

Historical Examples of instantaneously

  • He sees at one glance and instantaneously all the past, present, and future.

  • Smoothly and instantaneously as a shadow Reddin eluded the attack.

    Earth's Enigmas

    Charles G. D. Roberts

  • I have never seen a stranger who won my regard so instantaneously.

    Ernest Linwood

    Caroline Lee Hentz

  • So instantaneously do they receive and understand God's revelations.

  • And instantaneously, as a baby at the breast, she found that all his strength and serenity were hers.


    E. F. Benson

British Dictionary definitions for instantaneously


  1. occurring with almost no delay; immediate
  2. happening or completed within a momentinstantaneous death
  3. maths
    1. occurring at or associated with a particular instant
    2. equal to the limit of the average value of a given variable as the time interval over which the variable is considered approaches zeroinstantaneous velocity
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Derived Formsinstantaneously, adverbinstantaneousness or instantaneity (ɪnˌstæntəˈniːɪtɪ), noun
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 instantaneously



1640s (implied in instantaneously), formed in English from Medieval Latin *instantaneus, from instantem (see instant (n.)) on model of spontaneous. Related: Instantaneousness.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper