Definition of tendency in English:

tendency

nounPlural tendencies

  • 1often with infinitive An inclination towards a particular characteristic or type of behaviour.

    ‘for students, there is a tendency to socialize in the evenings’
    ‘criminal tendencies’
    • ‘If we have to keep this going, we will have to control the tendency to burst out laughing.’
    • ‘There was a growing tendency among city dwellers to install power showers instead of baths.’
    • ‘Tendencies towards autocracy seem embedded in the country's political culture.’
    • ‘Heavy drinkers can show violent tendencies and personal relationships may suffer as a result.’
    • ‘I have a bad tendency to move on to the new cool project and leave other projects behind.’
    • ‘A dreary trait of actors is their tendency to gush about the great privilege it was to work with each other.’
    • ‘Life has an inherent tendency to be novel and spontaneously creative.’
    • ‘We are a country with very real isolationist tendencies.’
    • ‘I have a tendency to scratch vigorously behind my right knee when distracted.’
    • ‘The human race has a pervasive tendency towards religious conviction.’
    • ‘She does have a tendency to get involved if she sees a fight.’
    • ‘You are pessimistic and have a tendency to behave negatively.’
    • ‘Research has shown that we have a tendency to eat more when it is darker.’
    • ‘He showed suicidal tendencies.’
    • ‘He has a tendency to be ruthless when he has tired of a girlfriend.’
    • ‘His tendency to spend was a problem from the start.’
    • ‘Our libertarian tendency supports the free flow of information.’
    • ‘Young children have a tendency to put just about anything in their mouths.’
    • ‘He attacked the tendency for rights to outweigh citizens' sense of responsibility.’
    • ‘My hair has a tendency to frizz up and stick out over my ears.’
    propensity, proclivity, proneness, aptness, likelihood, inclination, disposition, predisposition, bent, leaning, penchant, predilection, susceptibility, liability
    trend, movement, drift, swing, gravitation
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 A group within a larger political party or movement.
      • ‘He acted with extreme brutality against separatist tendencies in the Caucasus.’
      • ‘That inner war between rival tendencies is expressed in labour movements.’
      • ‘These political tendencies are expected to register gains in the coming election.’
      • ‘Two political tendencies emerged during this period of rampant anti-Semitism.’
      • ‘All of these tendencies had their impact on the political orientation of the Fourth International.’
      • ‘Numerous left tendencies advanced this theory.’
      • ‘I think it would be a stunningly bad idea to give in to the threats of the anarchist tendency.’
      • ‘The Bolshevik Party always had rightist, compromising tendencies and ultra-left tendencies.’
      • ‘Each of the tendencies aims at a different sector of the political spectrum.’
      • ‘The wavering on the part of these tendencies explains the sharp turns undertaken by certain politicians.’
      • ‘Their union had right-wing tendencies and had clashed with larger left-wing unions.’
      • ‘Other tendencies or parties will prevail and hold the movement back.’
      • ‘Speakers from these tendencies sharply attacked the planned collaboration with him.’
      • ‘Tito and his Communist regime acted sternly to suppress nationalist tendencies.’

Origin

Early 17th century: from medieval Latin tendentia, from tendere ‘to stretch’ (see tend).

Pronunciation

tendency

/ˈtɛnd(ə)nsi/