Definition of reluctant in English:

reluctant

Line breaks: re|luc¦tant
Pronunciation: /rɪˈlʌkt(ə)nt
 
/

adjective

Unwilling and hesitant; disinclined: [with infinitive]: she seemed reluctant to answer
More example sentences
  • There are a lot of people, though, who would be very reluctant to let our traditional flag go.
  • But people appear increasingly reluctant to intervene in public places.
  • What on earth could be in our files that made them so reluctant to give us access?
Synonyms
unwilling, disinclined, unenthusiastic, grudging, resistant, resisting, opposed, antipathetic; hesitantshy, bashful, coy, retiring, diffident, reserved, restrained, withdrawn, shrinking, timid, timorous, sheepish, unconfident, insecure, unsure, suspicious, unassertive; apprehensive, fearful
rare costive
loath, unwilling, disinclined, not in the mood, indisposed, sorry, averse, slow; chary of, not in favour of, against, opposed to; hesitant about, diffident about, bashful about, shy about, coy about; ashamed to, afraid to

Origin

mid 17th century (in the sense 'writhing, offering opposition'): from Latin reluctant- 'struggling against', from the verb reluctari, from re- (expressing intensive force) + luctari 'to struggle'.

Derivatives

reluctantly

adverb
More example sentences
  • After a lengthy plea from a social worker, the judge reluctantly agrees to allow the boy to leave.
  • It is a system where some people pay, somewhat reluctantly, for the welfare of others.
  • She invited some of the children into her home to paint, and they came, reluctantly.

Definition of reluctant in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day animalcule
Pronunciation: ˌanɪˈmalkjuːl
noun
a microscopic animal