What does reluctant mean?

Definitions for reluctant
rɪˈlʌk təntre·luc·tant

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word reluctant.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. loath, loth, reluctantadjective

    unwillingness to do something contrary to your custom

    "a reluctant smile"; "loath to admit a mistake"

  2. reluctantadjective

    disinclined to become involved

    "they were usually reluctant to socialize"; "reluctant to help"

  3. reluctantadjective

    not eager

    "foreigners stubbornly reluctant to accept our ways"; "fresh from college and reluctant for the moment to marry him"


  1. reluctantadjective

    Opposing; offering resistance (to).

  2. reluctantadjective

    Not wanting to take some action; unwilling.

    She was reluctant to lend him the money

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Reluctantadjective

    Unwilling; acting with repugnance.

    Etymology: reluctans, Lat.

    Reluctant; but in vain! a greater pow’r
    Now rul’d him. John Milton, Paradise Lost, b. x.

    Some refuge in the muse’s art I found;
    Reluctant now I touch’d the trembling string
    Bereft of him, who taught me how to sing. Thomas Tickell.


  1. reluctant

    Reluctant refers to being unwilling or hesitant to do something, generally arising from fear, dislike or unwillingness. It expresses a lack of enthusiasm or resistance towards a particular action or situation.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Reluctantadjective

    striving against; opposed in desire; unwilling; disinclined; loth

  2. Reluctantadjective

    proceeding from an unwilling mind; granted with reluctance; as, reluctant obedience

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Reluctant

    rē-luk′tant, adj. struggling or striving against: unwilling: disinclined.—v.i. Rēluct′, to make resistance.—ns. Reluc′tance, Reluc′tancy, state of being reluctant: unwillingness.—adv. Reluc′tantly.—v.i. Reluc′tāte, to be reluctant.—n. Reluctā′tion, repugnance. [L. reluctans, -antis, pr.p. of reluctārire-, against, luctāri, to struggle.]

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'reluctant' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #4395

  2. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'reluctant' in Adjectives Frequency: #595

How to pronounce reluctant?

How to say reluctant in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of reluctant in Chaldean Numerology is: 6

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of reluctant in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of reluctant in a Sentence

  1. Joe Heck:

    If you talk to those who would be impacted, that is males and females ages 18 to 25, they say, yes, women should have to register. Its a matter of equality, if you talk to an older population, theyre the ones who seem to be reluctant.

  2. Chester Spatt:

    Maybe it shouldn't pose a privacy problem, but some people will be reluctant to provide that to their employer.

  3. Cora Harrington:

    Intimate Detail's interesting to see Victoria's Secret pick up little bits and pieces of where the industry is moving, but somehow still be reluctant to go all in in some pretty significant ways.

  4. Mitt Romney:

    I've been reluctant from the beginning trying to advise House Democratic on how they should proceed, now that the speaker has scheduled a vote on the impeachment inquiry, I think the issue has been over taken by events.

  5. Matthew Karnes:

    People are somewhat reluctant to reveal they're cannabis users when they're dating, it might be a turn-off. Most dating apps have you check a box -- whether you drink or smoke (cigarettes), those are the two categories. At some point, they'll gravitate towards cannabis use.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for reluctant

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"reluctant." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 19 Jul 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/reluctant>.

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    cause to spread or flush or flood through, over, or across
    A caddie
    B excogitate
    C exacerbate
    D suffuse

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