In"stance (?), n. [F. instance, L. instantia, fr. instans. See Instant.]


The act or quality of being instant or pressing; urgency; solicitation; application; suggestion; motion.

Undertook at her instance to restore them. Sir W. Scott.


That which is instant or urgent; motive.


The instances that second marriage move Are base respects of thrift, but none of love. Shak.


Occasion; order of occurrence.

These seem as if, in the time of Edward I., they were drawn up into the form of a law, in the first instance. Sir M. Hale.


That which offers itself or is offered as an illustrative case; something cited in proof or exemplification; a case occurring; an example.

Most remarkable instances of suffering. Atterbury.


A token; a sign; a symptom or indication.


Causes of instance, those which proceed at the solicitation of some party. Hallifax. -- Court of first instance, the court by which a case is first tried. -- For instance, by way of example or illustration. -- Instance Court Law, the Court of Admiralty acting within its ordinary jurisdiction, as distinguished from its action as a prize court.

Syn. -- Example; case. See Example.


© Webster 1913.

In"stance (?), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Instanced (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Instancing (?).]

To mention as a case or example; to refer to; to cite; as, to instance a fact.

H. Spenser.

I shall not instance an abstruse author. Milton.


© Webster 1913.

In"stance, v. i.

To give an example.


This story doth not only instance in kingdoms, but in families too. Jer. Taylor.


© Webster 1913.

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