Main definitions of kind in English

: kind1kind2



  • 1A group of people or things having similar characteristics.

    ‘all kinds of music’
    ‘more data of this kind would be valuable’
    • ‘The kinds of wine and food served for a fine dining experience will depend on your budget.’
    • ‘I will deal with the first kind of case in this section, and the second kind in the next section.’
    • ‘Students who have these kinds of experiences know many ways to learn almost anything!’
    • ‘We recognize four basic kinds of teeth in an individual's jaw, the incisors, canines, premolars, and molars.’
    • ‘Two kinds of writing by Seth Godin gives some quick, focused tips on how to write for different audiences.’
    • ‘This is probably the busiest month in the year with music of all kinds dominating the action.’
    • ‘It is one of those CD's that you want to keep playing and playing, the kind where you family tell you that they have heard it enough.’
    • ‘After the students have modeled both kinds of dinosaurs with their hands, have them locate both kinds of dinosaurs on the classification chart.’
    • ‘We try to compensate for our natural sinfulness by performing good works of various kinds.’
    • ‘Oldham's Bangladeshi community enjoyed traditional music of a different kind as Scottish bagpipes entertained crowds in Westwood.’
    • ‘Yoghurts, as we all know are often part of a dieter's menu, specifically the kind that are very reduced in fat content.’
    • ‘The opening credits are accompanied by upbeat, jaunty music - the kind that usually signals a comedy is on the way.’
    • ‘I love all kinds of films, except the plotless kind with unconvincing acting, shoddy editing and duff music played on synths.’
    • ‘Mind you chips, not the edible kind, were the order of the night as the punters gambled like crazy to make their fortune.’
    • ‘He didn't seem the kind of guy who would just get talking to a stranger.’
    • ‘Can people still motivate themselves to vote if they only see these two kinds of politicians?’
    • ‘Choose dark or whole-wheat bread over the white kind - likewise for rice and pasta.’
    • ‘Healing activities of many kinds form a central part of their church life and are open to all.’
    • ‘On a nearby table lay several bottles of finger paint, like the kind used in elementary schools.’
    • ‘Moreover, such approaches to assessment send students the message that higher education does not value certain kinds of thinking.’
    sort, type, variety, style, form, class, category, genre
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1mass noun Character or nature.
      ‘the trials were different in kind from any that preceded them’
      • ‘Since a thing's criteria of identity are determined by its nature or kind, God is their ultimate ground.’
      • ‘"In a straightforward case, such as the threat of violence or something of that kind, people should go to the police, " he said.’
      • ‘Companionship of the same kind was therefore required for him, for he was not intended to be an isolated being.’
      • ‘It is my understanding that the country has never admitted that nuclear weapons are different in kind from other weapons.’
      • ‘I think that a Toronto signing/reading/event is almost a certainty, but of what kind and nature I don't yet know.’
      • ‘In the final analysis, the ideology of radical diversity surreptitiously promotes a political program of the same kind.’
      • ‘The Liberals have an interesting dilemma, similar in kind to the Labour dilemma.’
      character, nature, essence, quality, disposition, make-up, calibre
      View synonyms
  • 2Each of the elements (bread and wine) of the Eucharist.

    ‘communion in both kinds’
    • ‘Many practices that were part of pre-Vatican II Roman Catholicism, such as communion in one kind for the laity and eastward-facing celebrations, have not died out, as Anglicans sometimes think.’
    • ‘He recognized three sacraments: baptism, the Eucharist in both kinds, and penitence.’


The plural of kind often causes difficulty. With this or that, speaking of one kind, use a singular construction: this kind of question is not relevant; that kind of fabric doesn't need ironing. With these or those, speaking of more than one kind, use a plural construction: we refuse to buy these kinds of books; I've given up those kinds of ideas. The ungrammatical use these kind rather than these kinds (as in these kind of questions are not relevant) has been recorded since the 14th century, and although often encountered today, it should be avoided


  • in kind

    • 1In the same way; with something similar.

      ‘if he responded positively, they would respond in kind’
      • ‘I was finding it difficult to respond in kind to his teasing.’
      • ‘Only the possibility that she might be a member of my congregation prevented me from responding in kind.’
      • ‘The least that can be done is to take him seriously and to respond in kind.’
      • ‘And he responded to me in kind last night saying that he understood that and that it was an attack against him.’
      • ‘People got up and told stories about my mom and she replied in kind.’
      • ‘He was about to become engaged to a maiden named Luscinda, whom he had loved since childhood and who returned his feelings in kind.’
      • ‘Other people's viciousness, gossip, and vengefulness are no excuse for you to respond in kind.’
      • ‘Johnson took King's attack as a declaration of war and responded in kind.’
      • ‘In kind, I ask him to withdraw and apologise because I do not like his claiming that I am a stooge of anyone else.’
      • ‘Treat the players right, and they will respond in kind.’
    • 2(of payment) in goods or services as opposed to money.

      • ‘It does not have to be money, people can donate time or things in kind.’
      • ‘To raise money he would lead Swindon bikers en masse around the town collecting money and donations in kind to give to charity.’
      • ‘They held these manors upon condition of rendering the king service in person, or in kind, or in money.’
      • ‘Economists answer that generally a gift in kind has less value than a cash gift because it has restrictions.’
      • ‘Drugs have themselves become currency - payment in kind where cash is unavailable and relatively worthless.’
      • ‘It is understood part of the payment companies will make may be in kind rather than cash.’
      • ‘Muslims are instructed by the Koran to give to the poor in money or in kind on a regular basis.’
      • ‘For this, he had to perform a very heavy burden of services, and pay some money and some rents in kind.’
      • ‘Most transactions between Bell and the company were work for payment in kind rather than for cash.’
      • ‘Some nations responded instantly by pledging emergency aid in money and in kind.’
  • one's (own) kind

    • People with whom one has a great deal in common.

      ‘we stick with our own kind’
      • ‘I think, for the most part. they're opportunists without much dignity or pride, people who would sell out their own kind to get ahead.’
      • ‘Human rights legislation has placed an obligation on police to protect drug traffickers, robbers, gunmen and their associates from their own kind.’
      • ‘It's only nature, not hatred, to keep people among their own kind.’
      • ‘He detests the sort of expats who stick only to their own kind, and takes a dim view of those who make no effort to bridge cultural gaps.’
      • ‘Is it possible to be prejudiced towards your own kind?’
      • ‘I did not get the comfort of a supportive family and I was cut off from my own kind.’
      • ‘If this is you, then fine, enjoy the national anthem and the commercials and the halftime show on Sunday, but please do it with your own kind.’
      • ‘But why are these individuals haunting the most liberal blogs on the net to gloat instead of celebrating their victory with their own kind?’
      • ‘What does come through, not altogether attractively, is a steely determination in these well-born girls to stick with their own kind.’
      • ‘Scientists, in whatever society, are a quirky lot, motivated by enigmatic incentives comprehensible only to their own kind.’
  • someone's kind

    • Used to express disapproval of a certain type of person.

      ‘I don't apologize to her kind ever’
      • ‘He then became very hostile, calling her a devil-worshipper and shouting that ‘her kind’ had no business coming into a Christian center.’
      • ‘Academics usually plough a narrow disciplinary patch, whereas intellectuals of his kind roam ambitiously from one discipline to another.’
      • ‘When did they start letting your kind in here?’
      • ‘The summit of ambition for most men of his kind is to live in town when they are old, with everything on tap.’
      • ‘Their kind could never have survived the public scrutiny of commercialized fame.’
  • kind of

    • informal Rather; to some extent.

      ‘it got kind of cosy’
      • ‘We kind of wish they were going to be relying on her personality instead of the music.’
      • ‘When she died, my mum kind of fell apart a bit and the family was never really the same again.’
      • ‘I was kind of deaf in one ear, and was scared at the time that it would never get better.’
      • ‘I kind of got the feeling that this was be my last jaunt abroad, so I made the most of it.’
      • ‘Jay's kind of working as a field correspondent.’
      • ‘It was kind of a last minute thing to use some of my holiday up while working my notice.’
      • ‘All of a sudden, I was kind of tired of it and fed up and it was just time to do something else.’
      • ‘With just six days worth of posts from the twenty-plus day shoot, the weblog's kind of slight, but it makes for good reading.’
      • ‘At a certain point I just kind of decided to pick it up and wear it, and have fun with it.’
      • ‘Personally, I think she's kind of an idiot.’
      rather, quite, fairly, moderately, somewhat, a little, slightly, a shade
      View synonyms
  • a kind of

    • Something resembling.

      ‘teaching based on a kind of inspired guesswork’
      • ‘At times like this you realise that government is really a kind of confidence trick.’
      • ‘It looked and felt like a bit like a bible, and I, at eight, approached it with a kind of awe.’
      • ‘For many of her type and generation, prevention from celebrity is a kind of jail.’
      • ‘By the time we came along, she had a kind of love-hate relationship with the church.’
      • ‘One couple you saw who wanted to do this inspired in you almost a kind of moral outrage.’
      • ‘The thing about a shopping centre is it's a kind of twisted microcosm of the world.’
      • ‘His diaries of his years as a junior minister have granted him a kind of immortality.’
      • ‘It takes a kind of genius to alienate both major political parties in the space of a month.’
      • ‘There is also a kind of equality in the knowledge that the evening will cost everybody the same.’
      • ‘For some callers, failure to support local athletes was itself a kind of treachery.’
  • nothing of the kind

    • 1Not at all like the thing in question.

      ‘my son had done nothing of the kind before’
      • ‘The fact that the minister in question did nothing of the kind enraged other MPs.’
      • ‘Oh yeah, biologists treat biodiversity as an indispensable good of human existence but it's nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘Vilified by his detractors as an uncritical apologist for the Arabs, he was nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘While great cities and their outlying regions often look monolithic to outsiders, they are in fact nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘The so-called questions are nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘Many people and organizations claiming to be ‘revolutionary,’ are, in fact, nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘He has described the events as a coup, but it was nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘The president's ‘determined assault’ on poverty is nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘This issue is being represented as linguistic, relating to a democratic right of the people to stipulate word definitions, when it's nothing of the kind.’
      • ‘Yet many of the creatures touted as ‘feathered dinosaurs’ appear to be nothing of the kind.’
      1. 1.1Used to express an emphatic denial.
        ‘‘He made you do that?’ ‘He did nothing of the kind.’’
        • ‘And finally, the study fuelling the latest claims about mobile phones scrambling the mind in fact shows nothing of the kind.’
        • ‘‘I am nothing of the kind,’ she said, her voice somehow remaining steady.’
        • ‘Again, and of course, I said nothing of the kind.’
        • ‘Incidentally, for all those of you mailing in to say I spelt ‘Ottawa’ incorrectly earlier - I did nothing of the kind and have no idea what you're talking about.’
        • ‘Just one small quibble - I wrote nothing of the kind.’
        • ‘She adamantly insisted that she did nothing of the kind.’
        • ‘When Debbie brought up the matter, the other woman insisted she had said nothing of the kind and told Debbie she was imagining things.’
        • ‘Well, some data we have shows nothing of the kind.’
        • ‘When asked to provide a breath sample she replied in robust terms that she was going to do nothing of the kind, said Miss Bramley.’
        • ‘Now it turns out they knew nothing of the kind but assured us they did anyway.’
  • of its kind

    • Within the limitations of its class.

      ‘this new building was no doubt excellent of its kind’
      • ‘The general consensus of opinion was it was one of the best of its kind.’
      • ‘The vehicle is one of only three of its kind to be licensed in Manchester.’
      • ‘As with most properties of its kind, this town house does not have a garage.’
      • ‘It is the first early-warning system for heart attacks of its kind in Britain.’
      • ‘The first mission of its kind, its goal was to provide clues as to the origins of our solar system.’
      • ‘The volunteer recruitment programme was the biggest of its kind since the Second World War.’
      • ‘The event was the first of its kind but there may be more in the future.’
      • ‘The book may be excellent of its kind, but not something that the publisher wishes to deal with.’
      • ‘Although never completed, it is one of the largest statues of its kind in the world.’
      • ‘We understand it is one of the ten best gardens of its kind in the country.’
  • of a kind

    • Used to indicate that something is not as good as it might be expected to be.

      ‘there is tribute, of a kind, in such popularity’
      • ‘There are more than a half a dozen candidates for the presidency, so there is democracy of a kind.’
      • ‘Smashing up a hamburger joint might give a person kudos of a kind.’
      • ‘Sibling-theory suggests that a brother or sister may also act as a parent of a kind.’
      • ‘Though the Tory move shows boldness of a kind, it is not the only party that is rethinking.’
      • ‘The margins are inhabited by interesting people who have a beauty of a kind.’
      • ‘Except that we do have special status, of a kind, with the federal government.’
      • ‘Well it would still have to be jurisdictional error, would it not, of a kind.’
  • one of a kind

    • Unique.

      • ‘America's demographic vitality makes it nearly one of a kind among modern nations.’
      • ‘He's one of a kind, and there's just never going to be another Bob Hope.’
      • ‘As far as the medical profession is concerned, Tanya is one of a kind and her condition is now known as Donaldson's Syndrome.’
      • ‘Rollins may be one of a kind - an unusual mix of the analytical, cerebral, creative, and spiritual.’
      • ‘The child is no longer a unique creation - one of a kind - but rather an engineered reproduction.’
      • ‘Our control room is one of a kind and is absolutely superb.’
      • ‘This score remains a singular achievement - a unique, one of a kind opera.’
      • ‘He is truly a brilliant man, and he is certainly one of a kind.’
      • ‘One of a kind, the film is proof that American cinema still knows how to take risks and let the imagination soar.’
      • ‘Mr. Lane is one of a kind, and it's not just a birthday but an entire career that merits celebration.’
  • something of the kind

    • Something like the thing in question.

      ‘they had always suspected something of the kind’
      • ‘You know, I had hoped, by accepting his challenge, I could get him to tell me something of this affair; perhaps who the lady was, or something of the kind.’
      • ‘Instead, in 1951 I said ‘Good morning’ occasionally and Einstein would answer with ‘Guten morning’ or something of the kind, but that was it.’
      • ‘Well, I think it's fair to say we were all expecting something of the kind.’
      • ‘The first bar was playing some loud rap music, while the one on the other side was blaring some Euro-disco or something of the kind.’
      • ‘It was as if Adam was becoming another brother for me, or something of the kind.’
      • ‘Despite his mother's strange tales of a friend's friend's sister's cat, or something of the kind, everybody in the town knew everybody else's business.’
      • ‘Case 2 is kidnap and slavery, or something of the kind.’
      • ‘I knew I'd have to focus since my brain was still swirling with this new bit of information, not that I hadn't guessed that something of the kind was true.’
      • ‘It is to be feared that something of the kind has happened to Miss Stein.’
      • ‘She might have mentioned something of the kind.’
  • two (or three, four, etc.) of a kind

    • 1The same or very similar.

      ‘she and her sister were two of a kind’
      • ‘When I opened my eyes there she was - April from work, with her face up against mine telling me how we were two of a kind, and how we needed to do something about that, her and me.’
      • ‘Lizzie, can't you tell, we're two of a kind.’
      • ‘We're two of a kind, we have a history and we're gonna have a future.’
      • ‘You're two of a kind - genetically designed to get into trouble - and all we bystanders can do is pick up the pieces and try to stick them back together again afterward.’
      • ‘In these tumultuous years, the only constants are Rhett Butler, who sees through all Scarlett's pretenses to recognize that they are two of a kind, and Tara, which Scarlett comes to love as herself.’
      • ‘I myself had doubts at first until I went further in and found clothes that are two of a kind.’
      1. 1.1(of cards) having the same face value but of a different suit.
        • ‘Since the front hand has only 3 cards, only three hand types are possible: three of a kind; one pair; high card.’
        • ‘Also once you have made your meld you can then play sets of 3 of a kind.’


Old English cynd(e), gecynd(e), of Germanic origin; related to kin. The original sense was ‘nature, the natural order’, also ‘innate character, form, or condition’ (compare with kind); hence ‘a class or race distinguished by innate characteristics’.




Main definitions of kind in English

: kind1kind2



  • 1Having or showing a friendly, generous, and considerate nature.

    ‘she was a good, kind woman’
    ‘he was very kind to me’
    • ‘Here I have friends and kind neighbours - only one lives very near, the others at least six miles away.’
    • ‘They didn't know me from Adam but they were so kind and considerate and generous despite their grief.’
    • ‘We had a wonderful time and his family and friends were kind and generous toward me.’
    • ‘And furthermore, he has mellowed a lot in his old age, and is very kind to everyone.’
    • ‘It has been mentioned also tonight, and my own experience has been that he really is that kind of a gentle man, a very kind man, with a good sense of humor.’
    • ‘In its most direct form, hospitality refers to a kindness to visitors: a friendly welcome and a kind or generous treatment offered to guests or strangers.’
    • ‘His friends mourned a kind and generous man as well as a great talent.’
    • ‘Well, when I came to Johannesburg from the countryside, I knew nobody, but many strangers were very kind to me.’
    • ‘Melissa, it's very kind of you to have given the dog a home, and given your husband the chance to have a dog.’
    • ‘He was also very kind to all the livestock in his care.’
    • ‘Staff were really sweet and friendly, helpful, kind and generous.’
    • ‘Anne was well known for her beautiful and unusual flower gardens and her very kind and generous nature.’
    • ‘Miller wrote me back later and said he liked the column despite his initial harsh response - which was kind of him.’
    • ‘Good natured, kind and generous, Mary Ellen was held in great regard by all in the community.’
    • ‘He was the only one who had ever cared for her, who had ever spoken a kind word to her or bestowed a smile upon her.’
    • ‘The Chaplain was kind and polite and tried his level best to be decent.’
    • ‘So, I, being your benevolent, kind and generous friend, decided to get you a new cat for your birthday.’
    • ‘While on the cruise ship, I take pictures of those who have been especially kind to me, as they make nice memories for my cruise album.’
    • ‘Think of how a kind word spoken at the right time, or a special card sent to someone lonely or hurting can lift their spirits.’
    • ‘Ken, a reader and walker, has written a kind letter to me and has requested more routes south of York.’
    kindly, good-natured, kind-hearted, tender-hearted, warm-hearted, soft-hearted, good-hearted, tender, caring, feeling, affectionate, loving, warm, gentle, mellow, mild
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1predicative Used in a polite request.
      ‘would you be kind enough to repeat what you said?’
      • ‘I wonder if you'd be kind enough to address my concerns?’
      • ‘So perhaps you'd be so very kind as to be repeating now the tale you and he have been telling for nigh on six months?’
      • ‘Please be so kind as to let me know how I can get this wonderful magazine.’
      • ‘Perhaps François will be kind enough to refill our glasses a final time.’
      kindly, good-natured, kind-hearted, tender-hearted, warm-hearted, soft-hearted, good-hearted, tender, caring, feeling, affectionate, loving, warm, gentle, mellow, mild
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2kind to (of a consumer product) gentle on (a part of the body)
      ‘look for rollers that are kind to hair’
      • ‘Use vegetable-based soaps in the kitchen and bath; they're much kinder to your skin than harsh detergents or soaps.’
      • ‘Jonathan chose two different shades of dye, which had the added bonus of being tinted colour, as opposed to bleach, and so kinder to my hair.’
      • ‘The tissues are kind to your nose.’
    3. 1.3archaic Affectionate or loving.
      • ‘Hope would grow up in a kind and loving family, and forget her mother was ever a rough teenage tramp on the streets of Glasgow.’
      • ‘She was always a kind and loving mother to the twins.’
      • ‘He was a kind and loving husband and father and his passing is much regretted, not only by his sorrowing family, but also by his many friends.’
      • ‘Everyone besides Christy saw a kind, loving mother concerned for her daughter.’
      • ‘Her family were her priority and she was a wonderful loving and kind wife and mother.’
      kindly, good-natured, kind-hearted, tender-hearted, warm-hearted, soft-hearted, good-hearted, tender, caring, feeling, affectionate, loving, warm, gentle, mellow, mild
      View synonyms


Old English gecynde ‘natural, native’; in Middle English the earliest sense is ‘well born or well bred’, whence ‘well disposed by nature, courteous, gentle, benevolent’.