See more synonyms for intention on
  1. an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result.
  2. the end or object intended; purpose.
  3. intentions,
    1. purpose or attitude toward the effect of one's actions or conduct: a bungler with good intentions.
    2. purpose or attitude with respect to marriage: Our friends are beginning to ask what our intentions are.
  4. the act or fact of intending.
  5. Logic.
    1. Also called first intention, primary intention.reference by signs, concepts, etc., to concrete things, their properties, classes, or the relationships among them.
    2. Also called second intention, secondary intention.reference to properties, classes, or the relationships among first intentions.
  6. Surgery, Medicine/Medical. a manner or process of healing, as in the healing of a lesion or fracture without granulation (healing by first intention) or the healing of a wound by granulation after suppuration (healing by second intention).
  7. meaning or significance: The intention of his words was clear.
  8. the person or thing meant to benefit from a prayer or religious offering.
  9. Archaic. intentness.

Origin of intention

1300–50; Middle English intencio(u)n < Latin intentiōn- (stem of intentiō). See intent2, -ion
Related formsin·ten·tion·less, adjectivemis·in·ten·tion, nounpre·in·ten·tion, nounsub·in·ten·tion, noun

Synonyms for intention

See more synonyms for on
2. goal. Intention, intent, purpose all refer to a wish that one means to carry out. Intention is the general word: His intention is good. Intent is chiefly legal or literary: attack with intent to kill. Purpose implies having a goal or determination to achieve something: Her strong sense of purpose is reflected in her studies. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for intention

Contemporary Examples of intention

Historical Examples of intention

  • Now, so there will be no misunderstanding, it is not my intention to do away with government.

  • The intention is, I tell you plainly, to mortify you into a sense of your duty.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)

    Samuel Richardson

  • She could feel its false precision, its intention, its repulse of her.

  • He turned toward the hall door as if with the intention of lighting the chandelier.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • And, if it's any comfort to you, I have no intention of interfering in any way.


    Mary Roberts Rinehart

British Dictionary definitions for intention


  1. a purpose or goal; aimit is his intention to reform
  2. law the resolve or design with which a person does or refrains from doing an act, a necessary ingredient of certain offences
  3. med a natural healing process, as by first intention, in which the edges of a wound cling together with no tissue between, or by second intention, in which the wound edges adhere with granulation tissue
  4. (usually plural) design or purpose with respect to a proposal of marriage (esp in the phrase honourable intentions)
  5. an archaic word for meaning, intentness
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 intention

mid-14c., from Old French entencion "stretching, intensity, will, thought" (12c.), from Latin intentionem (nominative intentio) "a stretching out, straining, exertion, effort; attention," noun of action from intendere "to turn one's attention," literally "to stretch out" (see intend).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

intention in Medicine


  1. An aim that guides action.
  2. The process by which or the manner in which a wound heals.
Related formsin•tention•al adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.