English dictionary

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English noun: instrument

1. instrument (artifact) a device that requires skill for proper use

Broader (hypernym)device

Narrower (hyponym)analyser, analyzer, arm, cauterant, cautery, drafting instrument, engine, extractor, instrument of execution, instrument of punishment, measuring device, measuring instrument, measuring system, medical instrument, navigational instrument, optical instrument, plotter, scientific instrument, sonograph, surveying instrument, surveyor's instrument, tracer, weapon, weapon system, whip

2. instrument (act) the means whereby some act is accomplished

SamplesMy greed was the instrument of my destruction.
Science has given us new tools to fight disease.


Broader (hypernym)agency, means, way

3. instrument (person) a person used by another to gain an end

Synonymscat's-paw, pawn

Broader (hypernym)assistant, help, helper, supporter

4. instrument (communication) (law) a document that states some contractual relationship or grants some right

Synonymslegal document, legal instrument, official document

Broader (hypernym)document, papers, written document

Narrower (hyponym)acquittance, act, affidavit, arraignment, articles of incorporation, assignment, authorisation, authorization, bill, bill of indictment, brief, certificate, conveyance, debenture, deed, deed of conveyance, deed of trust, derivative, derivative instrument, enactment, impeachment, income tax return, indictment, judgement, judgment, judicial writ, law, legal brief, legal opinion, letters of administration, letters patent, letters testamentary, licence, license, living will, mandate, manifest, measure, negotiable instrument, opinion, passport, patent, permit, power of attorney, release, return, security, ship's papers, tax return, testament, title, trust deed, will, work papers, work permit, working papers, writ, written agreement

Domain categoryjurisprudence, law

5. instrument (communication) the semantic role of the entity (usually inanimate) that the agent uses to perform an action or start a process

Synonymsinstrumental role

Broader (hypernym)participant role, semantic role

6. instrument (artifact) any of various devices or contrivances that can be used to produce musical tones or sounds

Synonymsmusical instrument

Broader (hypernym)device

Narrower (hyponym)barrel organ, bass, calliope, electronic instrument, electronic musical instrument, grind organ, hand organ, hurdy gurdy, hurdy-gurdy, jew's harp, jews' harp, keyboard instrument, mouth bow, music box, musical box, percussion instrument, percussive instrument, steam organ, street organ, stringed instrument, wind, wind instrument

English verb: instrument

1. instrument (possession) equip with instruments for measuring, recording, or controlling

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s somebody

Broader (hypernym)equip, fit, fit out, outfit

2. instrument (creation) write an instrumental score for


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something

Broader (hypernym)compose, write

Domain categoryeuphony, music

3. instrument (communication) address a legal document to

Pattern of useSomebody ----s somebody

Broader (hypernym)address, direct

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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