Definition of instability in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌinstəˈbilədē/

noun (plural instabilities)

1Lack of stability; the state of being unstable: political and economic instability
More example sentences
  • Economic hardship and popular demoralisation may create social and political instabilities which are more formidable threats to the regime than war with South Korea.
  • Economic or political instabilities within Pakistan could easily ignite the conflict once more.
  • Some simple arithmetic can give us a broader view of these structural instabilities.
1.1Tendency to unpredictable behavior or erratic changes of mood: she showed increasing signs of mental instability
More example sentences
  • It emerged that Sharpe had a history of mental instability and had had psychiatric treatment.
  • He is unbalanced, and that mental instability makes him a danger to himself and to others.
  • This may be a reflection of Victorian attitudes towards mental instability.


Late Middle English: from French instabilité, from Latin instabilitas, from instabilis, from in- 'not' + stabilis (see stable1).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: in·sta·bil·i·ty

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