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necessity

Syllabification: ne·ces·si·ty
Pronunciation: /nəˈsesədē
 
/

Definition of necessity in English:

noun (plural necessities)

1The fact of being required or indispensable: the necessity of providing parental guidance should be apparent the necessity for law and order
More example sentences
  • But the fact that the necessity for dialogue has to be stressed in the more than 50-year-old alliance shows how tense relations are in reality.
  • This year there has been no necessity for farmers to choose between the census or the simplified systems.
  • The necessity to have access to larger markets is absolutely crucial.
1.1Unavoidability: the necessity of growing old
More example sentences
  • On the level of the abstract theory of capital expansion and exploitation, it is not possible to argue for the inevitable necessity of the North-South divide.
  • At this time thinking was dominated by Kant who had stated that Euclidean geometry is the inevitable necessity of thought.
  • Like theoretical reasoning, practical reasoning seeks in a sense to demonstrate the necessity of certain actions.
Synonyms
1.2A state of things or circumstances enforcing a certain course: created more by necessity than design
More example sentences
  • Of course, political necessity prevented the president from blurting the awkward truth that the nation is already running near-record deficits.
  • Political ideology is the result of individuals making statements about the world based on theory, and in many cases, political necessity.
  • It is driven by political necessity, and racial opportunism.
Synonyms
force of circumstance, obligation, need, call, exigency;
force majeure
2An indispensable thing: a good book is a necessity when traveling
More example sentences
  • These patients do not have even basic necessities such as clothes, soap and toothpaste.
  • Health care is not a golf game, it's a human necessity.
  • You drastically cut back on basic necessities such as food or travel to pay creditors.
3 Philosophy The principle according to which something must be so, by virtue either of logic or of natural law.
Example sentences
  • But since the Idea of Causation is a necessary condition of the very possibility of objective empirical knowledge, Newton's laws must share this necessity.
  • Of necessity it must deal with a ruling class that owns the material means of extracting or distributing information, or with a producing class that extracts and distributes.
  • The reaction of some to this whole exercise will be to say that it fortifies a dislike they had always had for natural necessity - even before it was relativised to a time.
3.1A condition that cannot be otherwise, or a statement asserting this.
Example sentences
  • The absolute necessity of the judgment is only a conditioned necessity of the thing, or of the predicate in the judgment.
  • Whence the force of the second ‘not’, which I take to be more than just the assertion of a pragmatic necessity in the teeth of radical scepticism.
  • Artists of this region have always created art out of a necessity that transcends the restrictive conditions imposed upon them.

Origin

late Middle English: from Old French necessite, from Latin necessitas, from necesse 'needful'.

Phrases

necessity is the mother of invention

1
proverb When the need for something becomes imperative, you are forced to find ways of getting or achieving it.
Example sentences
  • As is the case around the world, necessity is the mother of invention and innovative cooking techniques developed to make the most of what the land could provide.
  • If necessity is the mother of invention, Hurricane Katrina has forced some in this city to reinvent the way they do business.
  • If necessity is the mother of invention, these nations are in a good position to innovate in discovering and deploying applications that are of value to rural populations.
Synonyms
source, origin, genesis, fountainhead, inspiration, stimulus
literary wellspring

of necessity

2
Unavoidably: to alleviate labor shortages employers will, of necessity, offer better deals for part-timers
More example sentences
  • It is, of necessity, one that is inescapably based on discrimination and discernment.
  • This must of necessity bring her office and the judiciary into disrepute.
  • Whoever rejects it does, of necessity, fly to anarchy or to despotism.
Synonyms
as a matter of course, naturally, automatically, certainly, surely, definitely, incontrovertibly, undoubtedly
formal perforce

Definition of necessity in:

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