Definition of institute in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈinstəˌt(y)o͞ot/


[usually in names]
1A society or organization having a particular object or common factor, especially a scientific, educational, or social one: the Institute for Advanced Studies a research institute
More example sentences
  • Favored members of educational organizations and research institutes get opportunities to visit abroad.
  • This website, developed in association with a number of companies, professional institutes and a research council, provides a range of well illustrated resources.
  • The Stockholm Environment Institute is an independent, international research institute specialising in sustainable development and environment issues.
2 (usually institutes) archaic A commentary, treatise, or summary of principles, especially concerning law.
Example sentences
  • The Long Parliament returned the favor by ordering the Second, Third, and Fourth Parts of Coke's Institutes of the Laws of England published posthumously.


[with object]
1Set in motion or establish (something, especially a program, system, or inquiry): the Illinois Department of Conservation instituted a hunt to remove deer the award was instituted in 1900
More example sentences
  • In 1914 the government had sufficient trust in its citizens to institute a patriotic scheme whereby lathe hobbyists would make fully functioning artillery shells in their garages.
  • As is typical, the levying of the fine is a new policy instituted by the local government without adequately notifying the public.
  • We instituted a policy several years ago-we do not install computers in classrooms.
1.1Begin (legal proceedings) in a court.
Example sentences
  • As a part of the process of the hearing of that application, or during the process of the hearing of that application in the MRT, the High Court proceedings were instituted.
  • As a consequence of this, he is prevented from instituting legal proceedings except with the leave of the Supreme Court of Queensland or a Judge thereof.
  • The applicant then instituted fresh proceedings for judicial review of the Tribunal's decision in the Federal Magistrates Court.
2Appoint (someone) to a position, especially as a cleric: his sons were instituted to his benefice in 1986 [with complement]: a testator who has instituted his daughter heir
More example sentences
  • She named the young man executor of her will and instituted him as the sole and universal heir of her modest estate.
  • Mr Rendall, who was brought up in Gloucestershire and once worked as a solicitor in London, will be instituted to his new post by the Bishop of Gloucester at Broadwell Church in July.


Middle English (sense 2 of the verb): from Latin institut- 'established', from the verb instituere, from in- 'in, toward' + statuere 'set up'. The noun is from Latin institutum 'something designed, precept', neuter past participle of instituere; sense 1 of the noun dates from the early 19th century.

  • constitution from Middle English:

    A constitution once referred to a law, as well as to a body of laws or customs. It comes from Latin constituere ‘establish, appoint’ from con- ‘together’ and statuere ‘set up, place’. The latter is a rich source of English words including destitute (Late Middle English) literally ‘placed away’ so forsaken; institute (Middle English) something set up or established; restitution (Middle English) a re-establishing; statue (Middle English) something set up; and substitute (Late Middle English) someone set up instead of another. Prostitute (mid 16th century) comes from Latin prostituere ‘expose publicly, offer for sale’, from pro- ‘before’ and statuere ‘set up, place’.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: in·sti·tute

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