n) KEY NOUN:
- A course of action that one intends to follow.
- An aim that guides action; an objective.
- intentions Purpose with respect to marriage: honorable intentions.
- Medicine The process by which or the manner in which a wound heals.
- Archaic Import; meaning.
Middle English entencioun
, from Old French intention
, from Latin intenti, intentin-
, from intentus
, from past participle of intendere
, to direct attention
; see intendSYNONYMS: intention, intent, purpose, goal, end, aim, object, objective
These nouns refer to what one plans to do or achieve. Intention
simply signifies a course of action that one proposes to follow: It is my intention to take a vacation next month. Intent
more strongly implies deliberateness: The executor complied with the testator's intent. Purpose
strengthens the idea of resolution or determination: "His purpose was to discover how long these guests intended to stay" (Joseph Conrad). Goal
may suggest an idealistic or long-term purpose: The college's goal was to raise ten million dollars for a new library. End
suggests a long-range goal: The candidate wanted to win and pursued every means to achieve that end. Aim
stresses the direction one's efforts take in pursuit of an end: The aim of most students is to graduate.
is an end that one tries to carry out: The object of chess is to capture your opponent's king. Objective
often implies that the end or goal can be reached: The report outlines the committee's objectives.