Meaning of tendency in English:


Pronunciation /ˈtɛndənsi/

See synonyms for tendency

Translate tendency into Spanish

nounplural noun tendencies

often with infinitive
  • 1An inclination towards a particular characteristic or type of behaviour.

    ‘for students, there is a tendency to socialize in the evenings’
    • ‘criminal tendencies’
    • ‘The human race has a pervasive tendency towards religious conviction.’
    • ‘I have a tendency to scratch vigorously behind my right knee when distracted.’
    • ‘She does have a tendency to get involved if she sees a fight.’
    • ‘His tendency to spend was a problem from the start.’
    • ‘A dreary trait of actors is their tendency to gush about the great privilege it was to work with each other.’
    • ‘If we have to keep this going, we will have to control the tendency to burst out laughing.’
    • ‘I have a bad tendency to move on to the new cool project and leave other projects behind.’
    • ‘Young children have a tendency to put just about anything in their mouths.’
    • ‘You are pessimistic and have a tendency to behave negatively.’
    • ‘My hair has a tendency to frizz up and stick out over my ears.’
    • ‘Research has shown that we have a tendency to eat more when it is darker.’
    • ‘He showed suicidal tendencies.’
    • ‘Heavy drinkers can show violent tendencies and personal relationships may suffer as a result.’
    • ‘There was a growing tendency among city dwellers to install power showers instead of baths.’
    • ‘Life has an inherent tendency to be novel and spontaneously creative.’
    • ‘Our libertarian tendency supports the free flow of information.’
    • ‘Tendencies towards autocracy seem embedded in the country's political culture.’
    • ‘We are a country with very real isolationist tendencies.’
    • ‘He attacked the tendency for rights to outweigh citizens' sense of responsibility.’
    propensity, proclivity, proneness, aptness, likelihood, inclination, disposition, predisposition, bent, leaning, penchant, predilection, susceptibility, liability
    trend, movement, drift, swing, gravitation
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A group within a larger political party or movement.
      ‘he revealed that there was a tendency in the party that does not support this treaty’
      • ‘Other tendencies or parties will prevail and hold the movement back.’
      • ‘Two political tendencies emerged during this period of rampant anti-Semitism.’
      • ‘These political tendencies are expected to register gains in the coming election.’
      • ‘The Bolshevik Party always had rightist, compromising tendencies and ultra-left tendencies.’
      • ‘All of these tendencies had their impact on the political orientation of the Fourth International.’
      • ‘Each of the tendencies aims at a different sector of the political spectrum.’
      • ‘That inner war between rival tendencies is expressed in labour movements.’
      • ‘The wavering on the part of these tendencies explains the sharp turns undertaken by certain politicians.’
      • ‘Numerous left tendencies advanced this theory.’
      • ‘Speakers from these tendencies sharply attacked the planned collaboration with him.’
      • ‘He acted with extreme brutality against separatist tendencies in the Caucasus.’
      • ‘Their union had right-wing tendencies and had clashed with larger left-wing unions.’
      • ‘Tito and his Communist regime acted sternly to suppress nationalist tendencies.’
      • ‘I think it would be a stunningly bad idea to give in to the threats of the anarchist tendency.’


Early 17th century from medieval Latin tendentia, from tendere ‘to stretch’ (see tend).