Definition of natural in English:



  • 1Existing in or derived from nature; not made or caused by humankind.

    ‘carrots contain a natural antiseptic’
    ‘natural disasters such as earthquakes’
    • ‘The confined cage environment can never offer sufficient stimulation for their natural behaviour.’
    • ‘The natural medicine, derived from onions, is mixed with water and given to Paul through his feeding tube.’
    • ‘Every other type, even those derived from natural sources like soyabeans or wild yam, are put together in the test tube.’
    • ‘The colour is derived from the natural chlorophyll that is given out by the ingredients.’
    • ‘This is the largest natural disaster that this country has ever seen in terms of the destruction that has been caused.’
    • ‘To let it heal spontaneously would be natural, even if debilitating for life.’
    • ‘Depleted uranium is derived from natural uranium mined from the earth's crust.’
    • ‘How did a natural disaster turn into a national fiasco?’
    • ‘The food industry uses many other emulsifying substances, usually derived from natural foodstuffs.’
    • ‘The challenge was to make the most of the space and improve the existing flow of natural light.’
    • ‘Loyal readers might remember that I am a big fan of the Toronto Blue Jays, and the Red Sox are our natural rivals.’
    • ‘This is the largest natural disaster that our nation has ever faced.’
    • ‘It provides them with a wonderful range of natural hues derived from clay, bark, flowers and berries.’
    • ‘Do you believe the federal government should impose gasoline price freezes during natural disasters?’
    • ‘Overall, seventy percent of pharmaceuticals now being used come from or are derived from natural products.’
    • ‘I asked about a natural treatment at the health food store and was told to try tea tree oil.’
    • ‘Geological experts said the disaster was due to natural causes.’
    • ‘The tsunami is possibly the worst natural disaster ever.’
    • ‘There are plenty of natural treatments for an underactive thyroid.’
    • ‘Can you recommend a natural treatment that will make my hair look fuller?’
    • ‘The natural disaster caused incalculable loss of life in many countries around the perimeter of the Indian Ocean.’
    • ‘These events are unrelated, and humankind's vulnerability to natural hazards is as old as our species.’
    • ‘Well he thinks that I am a blonde deep down, even if my natural hair colour is brown.’
    • ‘Certainly, the military has a role to play in a major natural disaster.’
    • ‘Based on the classical traditions of fragrance, he uses only pure natural ingredients.’
    • ‘There are several natural treatments that can have an impact on the immune imbalance in asthma.’
    • ‘Using homeopathy and a range of other natural treatments, Pat set out on a journey of recovery that was to see her body go from strength to strength.’
    • ‘Many physicians recommend walking as a natural treatment to relieve depression.’
    • ‘Since each woman is unique and reacts differently to natural treatments, try them out for yourself.’
    • ‘Zookeepers run enrichment programmes to mimic the natural behaviour of the animals in the wild and to stimulate them in captivity.’
    • ‘He noticed she was small, and her hair natural, slightly red and very silky, not long, and not short.’
    • ‘It is a natural compound derived from sugar cane wax, beeswax or yams.’
    • ‘Carp seem to prefer different things in different lakes and natural behaviour is liable to become modified by angling pressure.’
    • ‘They were plant alkaloids and natural products - medicines derived from natural products.’
    • ‘Existing natural features and areas were identified as of ecological importance and were incorporated into the masterplan.’
    1. 1.1 Having had a minimum of processing or preservative treatment.
      ‘natural food’
      ‘our nutritional products are completely natural’
      • ‘A very natural, non-mechanised process is what makes the final product possible.’
      • ‘Composting is the natural process that turns autumn leaves into soil at the end of the year.’
      • ‘Vegetables with a natural preservative, clay, are well sought after.’
      • ‘We are not adapted to natural pesticides in our food as plant breeding accidents have adequately demonstrated.’
      • ‘We get all the sodium we need from the natural ingredients of food.’
      • ‘The additional benefit of using natural treatments is that they have no unwanted side effects.’
      • ‘To me, cooking is all about capturing the natural flavour of the food, not smothering it - clean, tasty, fresh food that looks great.’
      • ‘A positive way to combat the state of our children's diets is to opt for natural, unprocessed foods.’
      • ‘A natural doctor can assist with nutritional recommendations and natural allergy treatments.’
      unprocessed, organic, pure, wholesome, unrefined, pesticide-free, chemical-free, additive-free, unbleached, unmixed, real, plain, virgin, crude, raw
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 (of fabric) having a colour characteristic of the unbleached and undyed state; off-white.
      • ‘The golden yellow colour is the natural colour of the butter made strictly from cow's milk, it was pointed out.’
      • ‘Aged patina and marble finishes on fabrics will give subtle understated looks to natural fabrics.’
      • ‘She pinched her cheeks to give them a little more natural colour and moved to leave her room.’
      • ‘The unique feature of the mural painting is that only natural colours are used.’
      • ‘Her hair has changed, too - brown, black, fair, blonde - so that even she is not sure what its natural colour is any more.’
      • ‘In the living room, a large multipaned window swagged in natural linen takes center stage.’
  • 2In accordance with the nature of, or circumstances surrounding, someone or something.

    ‘sharks have no natural enemies’
    • ‘When we come to consider the aesthetics of the novel, what we are talking about is the extent to which fiction communicates emotion to its natural audience.’
    • ‘That is a natural extension to the existing role of regulator of civil transport and airports for safety purposes.’
    • ‘Not going into the post offices to collect cash means that the natural customers, who would have bought other services, are not tempted.’
    • ‘As people encounter new circumstances, the natural tendency is to seek a skilled mentor for guidance.’
    • ‘Hence the plant response to attack will not only affect herbivore numbers, it will also affect the quality of the herbivore for other natural enemies.’
    • ‘Canada is working to improve its understanding of these pests, including their natural enemies.’
    • ‘They'll also explore ways to trap the borers and perhaps manipulate the behavior of their natural enemies.’
    • ‘Dragonflies are natural enemies of mosquitoes, since they eat them.’
    • ‘Other factors to be considered are the lack of any known natural enemies and its large native distribution.’
    • ‘These people - and there are a lot of them - are not our natural enemies.’
    • ‘As they share basic values and are not far apart in their economic development, they are essentially natural partners.’
    1. 2.1attributive (of a person) having an innate skill or quality.
      ‘he was a natural entertainer’
      • ‘The 23-year-old man is a natural athlete, who can both beat players and take his scores.’
      • ‘He was also a brilliant firefighter, a natural athlete and big into sport, they even did a big article on him in Sports Illustrated.’
      • ‘He viewed him as a natural leader who would rise in the military hierarchy.’
      • ‘He was, by his own admission, far from a natural leader.’
      • ‘He's also a former soldier and a natural leader.’
      • ‘Mick who was one of life's natural gentlemen, was a singer and a comedian.’
      • ‘He makes me laugh so often, he must be a natural comedian!’
      • ‘For his part, Green insists he is not a natural writer.’
      • ‘He is a man of strong, well-informed opinions - an obvious, natural scholar.’
      • ‘With tennis you need a certain amount of technique - a natural sportsman wouldn't necessarily beat you.’
      • ‘They are natural thieves, and quick to boot, so remember to keep your bag closed and your pockets out of reach.’
      • ‘Johnny Cash was an American icon, a man who stood apart, a natural leader.’
      • ‘Montrose was charming and gallant, a superb natural soldier with a rare ability to get the best out of his tiny army of ill-equipped Highlanders.’
      • ‘From the age of two, when he started using a pack of cards to learn how to count, it was clear Shivam would make a natural card player.’
      • ‘And as a natural rebel, she was once suspended for three months for hurling obscenities at her coaches.’
      • ‘I'd always been a natural writer and, by the time I was 18, I had my own column.’
      • ‘A natural athlete she gravitated to basketball as an outlet for her skills.’
      • ‘You're a natural leader and quick, logical decision maker.’
      • ‘He was the natural leader on the field and his performance in the final did a lot to inspire his team mates to victory.’
      • ‘He is not, he admits, a natural teacher, and for him, having to stick with a single subject would have resulted in crushing boredom.’
      • ‘Then today, a piece from Dell, with the warning that she's ‘not a natural writer’.’
      • ‘A country of politicians, natural leaders, would-be prophets or gods would be very difficult to govern.’
      • ‘But Stewart for his part never cared for the praise of his friend Henry Fonda that he was a natural actor.’
      • ‘His excellent interpersonal skills and outstanding intellect make him a natural leader.’
      born, naturally gifted, untaught
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2 (of a skill or quality) coming instinctively to a person; innate.
      ‘Laura's natural adaptability enabled her to settle quickly’
      • ‘For each one it takes a certain amount of natural ability, but it also takes devotion, time, and commitment.’
      • ‘He is thrilled by the skills and enjoys the challenges associated with harnessing the natural talent and ensuring it continues to develop.’
      • ‘Yes, Manoj did have this natural flair for creating energy and pace!’
      • ‘She knew what ingredients went into several spells, but didn't have the natural talent that enabled her to perform magic.’
      • ‘Finney was the more rounded player, a natural predator who regarded the pitch as a happy hunting ground and revelled in his natural ability to score goals.’
      • ‘His natural confidence is allied with a realistic caution about his progress.’
      • ‘He knew that he could do any theoretical question by using his proven natural talent and intuitive understanding of the subject.’
      • ‘It's shocking that he hasn't written musicals before because he's a natural librettist.’
      • ‘There are many players who have better games than Henman, thanks to their innate natural talent.’
      • ‘Lara has got tons of natural ability and is always looking to play shots.’
      • ‘He has a natural aptitude for computation and is very quick at figure work.’
      • ‘The nature of men is described as often having a natural depravity that is hidden inside respectability.’
      • ‘Reaching great heights does not depend upon our natural talents and capabilities.’
      • ‘The academy selects its students on the basis of natural talent, dedication and the capacity for hard work.’
      • ‘Of course, in your natural arrogance, you believe everything is essential.’
      • ‘He discovered a natural flair and talent for the work.’
      • ‘Discovering you have a natural talent or aptitude for something feels good.’
      • ‘Of course, that little fact obviously doesn't get rid of their natural arrogance.’
      • ‘There is no doubt that the Jamaican players have an abundance of natural ability, but in today's game that is not enough.’
      • ‘His strength is possessing skills and natural ability that no modern-era quarterback can match.’
      • ‘Agreed - a certain amount of natural skill is required - but that skill needs to be properly nurtured.’
      • ‘The owner has used his natural talent and skills to develop a well-trained group of people.’
      • ‘Only the reflexes and natural ability that years of practice had given him was keeping him close.’
      • ‘He had natural ability then and could always score goals.’
      • ‘Take a look at what you have to offer, your skills, your natural talents and in what situations you perform at your best.’
      • ‘They hide our real thoughts and intentions and subdue our natural belligerence.’
      innate, inborn, inherent, native, native-born, intrinsic, instinctive, instinctual, intuitive, natural-born, ingrained, built-in
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3 (of a person or their behaviour) relaxed and unaffected; spontaneous.
      ‘he replied with just a little too much nonchalance to sound natural’
      • ‘We should all strive to adopt the natural, unselfconscious behavior of the child and live life in the present moment.’
      • ‘He really identified with Socialist Worker as a fighting paper-it was all very spontaneous and natural!’
      • ‘Nothing seems forced or fabricated, and the way in which they interact as families is natural and genuine.’
      • ‘I just wanted the interaction between the kids and the parents to be natural.’
      • ‘Defined orders tend to be restrictive and do little to encourage ordinary, natural relationships between parents and children.’
      • ‘The natural, spontaneous flow of your life energy becomes blocked or dulled.’
      • ‘It not only gives it to you raw, but its acting is flawless, very natural and spontaneous and all around very believable.’
      • ‘Let the natural and relaxed arm swing of walking or running become part of your skiing.’
      • ‘Hurley wins out on all counts with his casual and natural look and behaviour.’
      • ‘Perhaps this is because they mimic evolved solutions, so their behaviour seems more natural.’
      • ‘His portraits are especially effective and capture people's natural, spontaneous expressions.’
      • ‘The left-footing was always mechanical and I hate that - I love being natural and spontaneous.’
      • ‘Eventually, the jaws reach a natural, relaxed position, and no further adjustments are needed.’
      • ‘The problem is not with Jones, who gives a natural and unaffected performance, but with her character's story.’
      • ‘She has said that she tries to sound natural and unaffected, and that's a laudable goal.’
      unaffected, spontaneous, uninhibited, straightforward, relaxed, unselfconscious, genuine, open, artless, guileless, ingenuous, unsophisticated, unpretentious, without airs, easy
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4 Entirely to be expected.
      ‘Ken was a natural choice for chairman’
      • ‘The message you hear is pre-recorded and of course your natural reaction is to put the phone down.’
      • ‘Marriage was also seen as the natural course of a man's life, enabling him to function properly in his working life and fulfil his duty by fathering children.’
      • ‘Already negotiations with the public service unions are going on and these talks should be allowed to take their natural course.’
      • ‘He had been such a regular sight in Manchester's Oxfam that the staff thought he was the natural choice to open the new-look store.’
      • ‘Untreated, the natural course of minor depression is one to two years.’
      • ‘Under such circumstances, it is natural for the public to resort to other means to get justice.’
      • ‘Patients should be thoroughly educated about the natural course of osteoarthritis.’
      • ‘What is natural, of course, is that sex leads to pregnancy - the very situation that women have spent generations trying to control.’
      • ‘As a lifelong devotee to cycling, it was a natural choice for Rick to combine both of his greatest passions.’
      • ‘Perhaps it is natural for them to expect some kind of reward from the organisation.’
      • ‘While my family generally accepts all comers, in the natural course of things some are more loved than others.’
      • ‘Last year researchers launched the Decade of Behavior as a natural follow-up to the Decade of the Brain.’
      • ‘Your natural reactions to circumstances encourage success and the healthy growth of your ego and self-esteem.’
      • ‘In the world of stiff competition, it is natural for the parents to force their children to excel in what they do.’
      • ‘The large outer office looked bare and empty, but under the circumstances that was natural.’
      • ‘During the natural course of bipolar affective disorder, relapses and recurrences are frequent.’
      • ‘For him to want to continue a relationship with his child is perfectly natural.’
      • ‘I can't do anything else, so it was a natural choice for me.’
      • ‘And, of course, the natural choice was for her to be drawn with a dolphin.’
      • ‘Even if McLeish claims otherwise, it would be entirely natural for him to prioritise the Champions League over the Premierleague.’
      • ‘While the communities may feel a natural attachment for their surrounds, they legally have no claim to them.’
      • ‘Patients eventually assume that their symptoms reflect a natural state that is part of their epilepsy.’
      • ‘These poor deluded racists seem to think that pathologies are the natural course of events for most people.’
      • ‘In fact of course the suffering is neither natural nor inevitable.’
      • ‘I'm trying to let things take their natural course, but I don't know what that natural course is.’
      • ‘Attractive and photogenic, he was the natural choice to visually represent the party and its programs.’
      • ‘Boasting about how swimmingly this was going, and how much upstream clout he has, is entirely natural.’
      • ‘If we consider how electronic music developed, this is perfectly natural.’
      • ‘The conclusion is that it is natural, and therefore inevitable, for people to behave that way, too.’
      • ‘Pangs of conscience are, of course, a natural reaction to the taking of an innocent life.’
      • ‘Without treatment, however, the natural course of bipolar disorder tends to worsen.’
      • ‘I had viewed morals, and moral behavior, as the natural outcome of reason alone.’
      • ‘Of course, it's natural that we should feel like that.’
      • ‘Of course the natural tendency is to ignore them and keep on doing the same thing I've been doing.’
      • ‘The high quality of local produce and the good supply chain meant it was a natural choice over cheaper ingredients from abroad.’
      • ‘His original plan had been to allow the two men to become friends and let the talks take their natural course.’
      • ‘I grew up wanting to be a farmer - I loved being around animals and that was the natural choice.’
      • ‘It is entirely natural for Indians to take pride in the successes of their erstwhile compatriots abroad.’
      • ‘The two of you seem to like each other, so of course it would be natural for you to wed.’
      • ‘This achievement was not the result of policies imposed from above, but the natural outcome of a good educational system.’
      reasonable, logical, understandable, unsurprising, expected, to be expected, only to be expected, predictable
      View synonyms
    5. 2.5attributive (of law or justice) felt instinctively to be morally right and fair.
      ‘you might feel that holding the teacher responsible for the results contravenes natural justice’
      • ‘Even without a Human Rights Act, this legislation breaches every principle of natural justice and the rule of law.’
      • ‘This not only impairs the fair market order but also violates the natural rule of justice.’
      • ‘Oral hearings may take place, to which the rules of natural justice apply.’
      • ‘This was a breach of the rules of natural justice.’
      • ‘This allegation comes on top of the fact that the rule of natural justice that accused have the right to a speedy trial has long since gone out of the window.’
      • ‘No one would suggest that a court making orders of that sort should not comply with the common law rules of natural justice.’
      • ‘There was no suggestion of any impropriety, or lack of regard for rules of natural justice.’
      • ‘Breach of the rules of natural justice are jurisdictional grounds.’
      • ‘He argues the item was raised at last month's meeting without prior notice and in breach of standard procedures of natural justice.’
      • ‘But their wishes, even pious ones, do not trump the natural right of parents to decide such a matter.’
      • ‘Last Thursday, I had three examples of events reaching their conclusions in a way that follows my rules of natural justice.’
      • ‘Recently there has been a tendency to revive the rule, although it is no longer based on natural law.’
      • ‘People wonder what happened to the rules of natural justice and the presumption of innocence.’
      • ‘They will also be told that they must consider the application on its merits, observing the rules of natural justice.’
      • ‘The common law rules of natural justice or procedural fairness are two-fold.’
      • ‘Why do the natural rules of trust, common sense and due diligence for some reason not seem to apply online?’
      • ‘The validity challenge is based on alleged breaches of the rules of natural justice in two respects.’
      • ‘His attorney claims that this ‘trial in absentia’ was a denial of natural justice.’
      • ‘As Aquinas explained, law is natural because it is ‘a purpose implanted by the Divine art’.’
      • ‘Almost without noticing it, we lose touch with that spontaneity that is our natural inheritance.’
      • ‘Thus in defending the rule of law, we must ourselves respect and be bound by the due process of law and the rules of natural justice.’
  • 3attributive (of a parent or child) related by blood.

    ‘such adopted children always knew who their natural parents were’
    • ‘The fact that the mother is the natural parent of all five children is, of course, a significant factor to take into account.’
    • ‘She says she understands why adopted children are given the information to trace their natural parents’
    • ‘They were taken from their natural parents and put in foster care, and some were even adopted.’
    • ‘When his natural parents split up, the mother's new partner assaulted her and her son.’
    • ‘The children concerned may have no contact with their parents or natural family.’
    • ‘How can I stop my parents obviously favouring their natural grandchildren?’
    • ‘The right time to consider what kind of contact natural parents are to have to children being adopted is on the occasion adoption is under consideration.’
    • ‘It says that it is a dynamic group aiming to enforce the rights of children to see their natural parents and grandparents.’
    • ‘The parents still believe the children have a close attachment to their natural parents and extended family network.’
    • ‘The best person to bring up a child is the natural parent.’
    • ‘Bernie said a lot of natural parents - mostly mothers - also wanted access to the files to see that they were accurate.’
    • ‘The same patterns can be seen in people who were raised by one or both of their natural parents, or by their grandparents.’
    • ‘Due to my natural mum having psychological problems I was put into care when I was just a few days old.’
    • ‘Hielema has a brother who was also adopted and a sister who was a natural child of the parents who raised him.’
    • ‘Thus, the parents with higher intelligence test scores tended to have natural children with higher intelligence test scores.’
    • ‘The second factor is mobility: children move, for example, between foster parents and natural parents.’
    • ‘Does the child not have a right to inherit from its natural parent?’
    • ‘A lower court ruled that because she was not a natural parent of the children, they were not her responsibility.’
    1. 3.1archaic (of a child) illegitimate.
      ‘the Baron left a natural son by his mistress’
      • ‘Fathers also had legal obligations to provide for their natural children.’
      • ‘He had had her legitimised as his natural daughter.’
      illegitimate, born out of wedlock
      View synonyms
  • 4Music
    (of a note) not sharp or flat.

    ‘the bassoon plays G natural instead of A flat’
    • ‘A flat, natural, or sharp sign can be placed above it, to indicate a chromatic inflection of the upper note.’
    1. 4.1 (of a brass instrument) having no valves and able to play only the notes of the harmonic series above a fundamental note.
      • ‘In that way it's like playing a natural trumpet without valves.’
      • ‘However, a new dynamic emerges when the natural instrument is left untreated.’
    2. 4.2 Relating to the notes and intervals of the harmonic series.
      • ‘Perhaps it's the natural harmony in the male-female vocal.’
      • ‘A natural harmony singer, she fills that void that a single voice can often leave open.’
  • 5Christian Theology
    Relating to earthly human or physical nature as distinct from the spiritual or supernatural realm.

    • ‘They were designed to help the individual cope with perceived natural and supernatural adversity.’
    • ‘In our spiritual war, we need spiritual amour and spiritual weapons - not natural ones.’
    • ‘And I want to understand the nature of that power, be it spiritual or natural or a combination of the two.’
    • ‘They can exist in material objects, the natural world, spiritual realms, or all of the above.’
    • ‘From the Renaissance onwards, study of the natural realm was increasingly distinguished from metaphysics.’
    • ‘Scripture is made up of propositional truth statements, but the natural realm has no such statements.’
    • ‘In truth, for Pearce there is no division between natural and supernatural, at least not when she is at the top of her form.’
    • ‘Distinguishing between true and false in this realm is like distinguishing between straight and crooked in the natural realm.’
    • ‘These songs construct a vision in which the natural, human, and supernatural worlds are intertwined.’
  • 6Bridge
    (of a bid) straightforwardly reflecting one's holding of cards.

    ‘his bid of one heart was natural and positive’
    Often contrasted with conventional or artificial
    • ‘You can only take the discard pile if you have a pair of natural cards in your hand which are of the same rank as the top card of the discard pile.’
    • ‘An up card may only be taken by combining it with cards from the player's hand to form a new meld: at least one of the cards from the player's hand must be natural.’
    • ‘Wild cards (jokers and twos) can normally be used in melds as substitutes for natural cards of the appropriate rank.’
    • ‘This means players cannot take discard pile unless they have two natural cards of that type in hand.’
    • ‘An Ace high straight-flush is called a Royal Flush and is the highest natural hand.’
    • ‘A run with a natural top card will beat a run with a wild top card.’
    • ‘Note that you must bid at least one club in order to make your bid, and the club must be natural (with no wild cards).’
    • ‘A straight flush is the best natural hand.’
    • ‘If all the cards in it are natural, it is a pure canasta, indicated by stacking the cards together with a red card on top.’
    • ‘Between two otherwise equal hands, one made of natural cards beats one containing a joker.’


  • 1A person having an innate talent for a particular task or activity.

    ‘she was a natural for television work’
    • ‘The former Rangers striker was a natural for the role.’
    • ‘His winning personality makes him a natural for such work and the show seems to be taking off quite nicely.’
    • ‘Al Pacino is a natural for roles like this.’
    • ‘Then project leader believes Steve is a natural for the job.’
    • ‘Liu's martial arts skills make her a natural for the role, but Thurman proves to be a worthy adversary.’
    • ‘Fletcher is a natural for that role, because he runs faster than most fullbacks and is built like one.’
    • ‘Hannah told me that I was a natural for someone who had never really ridden a horse before.’
    • ‘Sir Norman's success in the films that made him such an icon meant he was a natural for TV.’
    • ‘His lyrical, handsome style made him a natural for classical roles and he was promoted soloist, then principal in 1983.’
    • ‘Was it always this way, were you a natural for public speaking?’
    • ‘Allinson has ably filled the show before, but Bruce is a natural for that time slot.’
    • ‘Pat Kenny described him as a natural in front of camera and that cannot be disputed.’
    • ‘For all his appeal, Spidey never seemed a natural for the screen.’
    • ‘Shannon's looks, which he thoroughly capitalized on, made him a natural for television.’
    • ‘He is a natural for second base, but he can also play anywhere in the infield, and even the outfield if necessary.’
    • ‘From a performance standpoint, Monica Potter is a natural for this genre.’
    • ‘He is a natural for this spot, where he can concentrate on making tackles instead of providing deep coverage.’
    • ‘The instructor also noted that she was a natural and asked if she had had any prior training.’
    • ‘His wild appearance and athletic ability made him a hit with fans and a natural for the ring.’
    • ‘Being close to us makes this ape a natural for scientific studies, and much time and effort is spent in research.’
    1. 1.1 A thing that is particularly suited for something.
      ‘perky musical accompaniment would seem a natural for this series’
      • ‘Internet communications are a natural for computer-assisted diagnosis and medication selection.’
      • ‘Although it wasn't written for him, the part of Miles Massey seemed a natural for George Clooney.’
      • ‘Polenta is best known as a hearty winter side dish, but its sunny yellow color and sweet corn taste make it a natural for spring too.’
      • ‘The climate of the country allows beans to grow during most of the year, so they are a natural for inclusion in many dishes.’
      • ‘Work, particularly work that involves words and thought, is not a natural for film.’
      • ‘In other words, it's a natural for the pages of the Fairfax press.’
      • ‘Since pro contests are mostly of interest to younger people, this would seem like a natural for the magazines.’
      • ‘Their story, combining heart-rending drama and gutsy determination, was a natural for the big screen.’
      • ‘Blackpool, with its Las Vegas aspirations and seedy seafront reality, is a natural for television drama.’
  • 2Music
    A sign (♮) denoting a natural note when a previous sign or the key signature would otherwise demand a sharp or a flat.

    • ‘Such appearances certainly suggest that the e flat in ex.3 is no scribal error for e natural.’
    1. 2.1 A natural note.
    2. 2.2 Any of the longer, lower keys on a keyboard instrument that are normally white.
  • 3mass noun An off-white colour.

    ‘colour for the summer is defined by the trend towards naturals’
    • ‘Colours are powdered pastels, warm naturals, primary colours and unusual accents.’
    • ‘The shop was a sea of cornflower blues and shocking reds, mellow naturals and pastels and mysterious blacks.’
    • ‘I mean, you can see there's a lot of pink in here, accented by naturals.’
  • 4(in a gambling game) a combination or score that immediately wins.

    • ‘You must have 2 naturals then you can play as many wild cards as you would like.’
    • ‘A two-card hand of nine or a two-card hand of eight are considered naturals and do not take any hits.’
    1. 4.1 A hand of two cards making 21 in the first deal in blackjack and similar games.
    2. 4.2 A first throw of 7 or 11 at craps.
  • 5Fishing
    An insect or other small creature used as bait, rather than an artificial imitation.

    • ‘Other flies are downright lures, which look nothing like a natural but provoke a response when pulled fast past a feeding trout.’
    • ‘Try the shrimp he said, referring to the purple natural, not the fly.’
    • ‘Small imitation naturals and light tippets should be used when fishing low, clear water.’
    • ‘When fishing such waters, under such conditions a better option is to go for smaller baits, either naturals or particles.’
  • 6archaic A person born with a learning disability.

    • ‘They were deficient, but probably not to the extent that they might be called naturals or idiots.’


dialect, informal
  • Naturally.

    ‘keep walking—just act natural’
    • ‘Ry's going to carry scars about that for the rest of her life no matter how natural she might act.’
    • ‘She is German, unused to the Hollywood tradition of Barbie-esque perfection, and acts natural.’
    normally, in a natural manner, in a natural way, unaffectedly, spontaneously, genuinely, artlessly, unpretentiously
    View synonyms


Middle English (in the sense ‘having a certain status by birth’): from Old French, from Latin naturalis, from natura ‘birth, nature, quality’ (see nature).