1. The action or fact of intending: Are computers capable of intention?
a. An aim that guides action; an objective: My intention is to learn Russian.
b. intentions Purpose with respect to marriage: She worried that his intentions were not honorable.
3. Medicine The process by which or the manner in which a wound heals.
4. Archaic Import; meaning.
[Middle English entencioun, from Old French intention, from Latin intentiō, intentiōn-, from intentus, intent, from past participle of intendere, to direct attention; see INTEND.]
Synonyms: 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 work for a year and then go back to school. Intent more strongly implies deliberateness: The executor complied with the testator's intent. Purpose stresses the desired result of one's actions or efforts and often implies a sense of dedication: The organization's purpose is to build affordable housing. A goal is something rewarding or fulfilling that inspires a sustained endeavor: The college's goal was to raise sixty million dollars for a new library. End suggests an ultimate or overriding 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 something: The aim of the legislation is to spur the development of renewable energy. An object is a specific outcome or result on which one is focused: The object of chess is to checkmate your opponent's king. An objective is a goal that one is assigned or motivated to achieve: The report outlines the committee's objectives.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus