Definition of proclivity in US English:



  • A tendency to choose or do something regularly; an inclination or predisposition toward a particular thing.

    ‘a proclivity for hard work’
    • ‘All of these things independently contribute to Redfern's crime problems and all of them also contribute to the proclivity amongst young people in Redfern to use drugs.’
    • ‘There has been enough mockery in the Western media concerning the proclivity of Chinese people to create counterfeit Western goods.’
    • ‘In the current study, parental monitoring relates in parallel ways to personal self-esteem and lower proclivities toward risk factors.’
    • ‘Yet an action that affects other people is always, by definition, a moral issue, regardless of whether the actor chooses the proclivity to engage in it.’
    • ‘Even if one abides by the rules, the prospect of getting hit looms large, for there are any number of people who have a proclivity for reckless driving.’
    • ‘I'm a grown person with masculine proclivities and habits of self-defense, but there is a time when all systems of egotism and predominance fail.’
    • ‘He cannot, therefore, be accused of pandering to the partisan proclivities of the people.’
    • ‘Sexual proclivity, especially one that is not acted on, does not necessarily entail a loss of impulse control.’
    • ‘When he first began Gay Ski Week, he initially downplayed the homosexual element, partly because he was reluctant to be too public about his own sexual proclivities.’
    • ‘What does that say about our own friendships and our unfortunate proclivity to ignore people who are not similar?’
    • ‘It involves a ‘politics of the will’ in which a person's capacities and proclivities are at the fore.’
    • ‘I mean, I don't believe you inherit these conditions per se, but you inherit a slight proclivity towards them.’
    • ‘The German proclivity towards deep motifs is at least partially attributable to the use of water-powered cutting wheels.’
    • ‘Your health insurer may wish to know about your sexual proclivities; the security services may want to know about any suspicious book purchases you may have made with your credit card.’
    • ‘Some obsessions appear to have larger pertinence to a person's sexual proclivities.’
    • ‘One emphasis of the workshop was on ways of reading animals to determine their biological proclivities towards skittishness.’
    • ‘Personally I have a proclivity to be ecstatic, but it's interesting, my studies have studied the most ‘sober’.’
    • ‘Because I am gay, my sexual proclivities are not hindered by a gender gap.’
    • ‘And there is no evidence that the holding of liberal views on sexual matters correlates with a proclivity towards the sexual abuse of minors.’
    • ‘And underneath everything is a proclivity toward epic storytelling - even if one is not always sure exactly what the story is.’
    liking, inclination, tendency, leaning, disposition, propensity, bent, bias, penchant, predisposition, predilection, partiality, preference, taste, fondness, weakness, proneness
    View synonyms


Late 16th century: from Latin proclivitas, from proclivis ‘inclined’, from pro- ‘forward, down’ + clivus ‘slope’.