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[ri-luhk-tuh ns] /rɪˈlʌk təns/
unwillingness; disinclination:
reluctance to speak in public.
Electricity. the resistance to magnetic flux offered by a magnetic circuit, determined by the permeability and arrangement of the materials of the circuit.
Also, reluctancy.
1635-45; reluct(ant) + -ance
Related forms
prereluctance, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples for reluctance
  • Now one can guess at the reasons for the reluctance of academics to think seriously about policing one another.
  • Falling sales are discouraging hiring, which is adding to consumers' reluctance to spend.
  • The guard's reluctance to let the foreigner continue on is understandable.
  • But the question of self-disclosure goes deeper than mere willingness or reluctance.
  • Lawyers' reluctance to turn bill collector is probably matched only by some clients' reluctance to pay up.
  • Several professional and personal factors prompted my reluctance.
  • No one can claim that, and to do so shows disregard for the true spirit of science and reluctance to budge from the status quo.
  • His reluctance to make definitive public statements on the secession crisis was an ongoing theme in his remarks on this journey.
  • The reason for his reluctance is that he knows whatever he says will be molded into a narrative he can't control.
  • There may also be a reluctance to admit that such a gushing provision of liquidity has altered the policy stance.
British Dictionary definitions for reluctance


lack of eagerness or willingness; disinclination
(physics) a measure of the resistance of a closed magnetic circuit to a magnetic flux, equal to the ratio of the magnetomotive force to the magnetic flux
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for reluctance
1640s, "act of struggling against," from obsolete verb reluct "to struggle or rebel against" (1520s), from L. reluctari "to struggle against," from re- "against" + luctari "to struggle." Meaning "unwillingness" is first attested 1660s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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