Meaning of influence in English:


Pronunciation /ˈɪnflʊəns/

See synonyms for influence

Translate influence into Spanish


  • 1mass noun The capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself.

    ‘the influence of television violence’
    • ‘I was still under the influence of my parents’
    • ‘their friends are having a bad influence on them’
    • ‘This concept of group norm may capture a more accurate reflection of the effects of social influence on behaviour.’
    • ‘Another important influence over the development of parents' groups has been the media.’
    • ‘Audience participation and influence over media content development is still exceedingly limited.’
    • ‘The true and abiding interest of the battle is derived from is moral effect, from its influence on the people of the Netherlands.’
    • ‘Such developments had enormous influence on subsequent generations of artists.’
    • ‘Bach remained, however, arguably the most important influence on his musical development.’
    • ‘In fact, he was little read outside Italy prior to the war and his influence on the development of air power theory was limited.’
    • ‘It is safe to say that no other fictional character had as much influence on the American freedom struggle as Miss Jane Pittman.’
    • ‘However, the study had little influence on space program development.’
    • ‘Self-esteem is the single biggest influence on your behaviour.’
    • ‘The family is an extremely important environmental influence on personality development.’
    • ‘We do not know the relative contributions of heritability and environmental influence on abusive behaviours.’
    • ‘The second main viticultural role widely attributed to the monks was their influence on the development of vineyards in the Americas.’
    • ‘In the present context, letter visibility and its influence on reading behaviour might play a role.’
    • ‘So talmudic law in turn exercised great influence on the development of the common law from the eleventh century.’
    • ‘Payment methods should be assessed in light of their influence on the behaviours of providers and patients.’
    • ‘Despite public spending on culture, the art market remained an important condition for and influence on cultural development.’
    • ‘How many people here have been told that they have have had a profound effect and influence on their friends' lives?’
    • ‘Rather than having any direct influence on the outcome of the strike it had an impact on the political struggle.’
    • ‘But it hasn't yet had enough influence on mainstream developers to alter the direction of urban growth.’
    effect, impact
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    1. 1.1The power to shape policy or ensure favourable treatment from someone, especially through status, contacts, or wealth.
      ‘the institute has considerable influence with teachers’
      • ‘This is because people involved in corruption include those with higher status, political influence and economic power.’
      • ‘Gold might bring power, wealth and influence, but it has wrecked as many lives as it has made.’
      • ‘In doing so he demonstrated both the power of his influence and his status as one of Lien Chan's most senior advisers.’
      • ‘In spite of all his wealth, power and influence, he cannot avert his own downfall.’
      • ‘The loss of high office is as much as we could hope for because it doesn't appear to be a criminal offence to use undue ministerial influence to get favoured treatment for your friends.’
      • ‘Our fallen human instincts seek power, wealth, status, and influence.’
      • ‘You will increase your influence and prestige through contact with politicians.’
      • ‘It is common knowledge that Filipino women exercise considerable power and influence.’
      • ‘Although your personnel director may wield considerable power and influence, s/he may not know you very well.’
      • ‘She has now attained a position of influence and status, with the means to carry out her plans of revenge.’
      • ‘And, Ben, she came to this position of enormous influence and power by accident.’
      • ‘It has been a bad week for those of us who believe that people in positions of power and influence are governed by the same standards of decency and integrity with which we conduct our own lives.’
      • ‘As gender biases fade, women in positions of power, influence, and responsibility will enjoy greater acceptance.’
      • ‘Nonetheless, these offstage characters still exert significant influence over their families.’
      • ‘They say that their party membership has no effect or influence on the way they work in Council.’
      • ‘A group of people wanting to know who has had the greatest influence on the development or fame of the town is asking just that.’
      • ‘As we saw earlier, all these declarations may have had some influence on the further development of regional treaties and regimes.’
      • ‘However agents should not develop too much influence over what players are coming under the manager's radar.’
      • ‘Local interests did not need formal representation to exert effective influence over officials.’
      • ‘They are right that companies have great influence over politicians and that corporate behaviour needs limits and controls.’
      power, authority, sway, leverage, weight, standing, prestige, stature, rank, ranking, position, social position, station, connections, contacts
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    2. 1.2count noun A person or thing with the capacity to have an influence on someone or something.
      ‘Fiona was a good influence on her’
      • ‘It allows us to claim that the reason had an influence on the production of the decision, while not causing it.’
      • ‘So I've learned from them, and I think I've probably been an influence on them.’
      • ‘Don't forget your height, build, fishing style, types of lures and experience has an influence on rod selection.’
      • ‘I think he will probably have an influence on things but he's got to get into the Warrington methods and the English game first.’
      • ‘When prey are attacked by predators, escape ability has an obvious influence on the probability of survival.’
      • ‘And volcanism probably had a significant influence on sea level before 1850.’
      • ‘The annual cycle of hurricanes is probably a major influence on the natural distribution of this species.’
      • ‘Watching Pete bowl was exciting and probably had an influence on my game.’
      • ‘This story had a formative influence on me and caused me to fret about the relationship between doctors and the pharmaceutical industry.’
      • ‘Even though he was probably a bad influence on me, he was fun to be around.’
      • ‘Bradman did not have an inspiring influence on those who played under him.’
      • ‘These four men exercised a powerful influence on Dürer and determined to some degree his artistic career.’
      • ‘Second, the process of adoption is affected by influences both external and internal to the system.’
      • ‘It is obvious that a lack of funds can seriously affect a school's performance and have an adverse influence on the life chances of its pupils.’
      • ‘French architecture also had a strong influence on other countries, the Netherlands, for example.’
      • ‘The last minute change might cause additional uncertainty, that might have an influence on the number of people attending.’
      • ‘That difficult experience had a life-long influence on the children and became a source of motivation for him.’
      • ‘Your writing style is actually inspiring and has had an influence on my own.’
      • ‘Charges located further in the pore interior have a greater influence on selectivity.’
      • ‘The streams and rivers that have such an influence on our lives are likewise affected by all our actions.’
      example for, example to, exemplar for, role model for, model for, guide for, inspiration to
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  • 2Physics
    archaic Electrical or magnetic induction.

    ‘When the twentieth century began we knew of only two types of natural force: gravitation and the intertwined influence of electricity and magnetism.’
    • ‘Under the influence of an electric field, the particles adhere to the panel, allowing them to stay there when the current is removed.’
    • ‘Thanks to the refraction of the magnetic field-characteristics, under the influence of the magnetic inductivity with a larger tangential component, the flipping of the flip plates becomes stable.’
    • ‘The influence of magnetic substrate on the flux distribution in superconductor films may be modeled.’


[with object]
  • Have an influence on.

    ‘sometimes simple changes in a business environment can influence behaviour’
    • ‘It was a bizarre build up to the goal as again the weather heavily influenced the play.’
    • ‘This can be very heavily influenced by the management style of the senior people.’
    • ‘We are beginning to get a picture now that social research is influenced by a variety of factors.’
    • ‘Clearly these were heavily influenced by Chinese ceramics emanating from the east.’
    • ‘The number of remote users and sites heavily influenced the level of infection.’
    • ‘The deformation of large masses of rock and soil is heavily influenced by the structure of the mass.’
    • ‘On the southern slopes of the mountain the climate is heavily influenced by the sea.’
    • ‘My latest academic upload is about the idea of social deference as a factor influencing vote.’
    • ‘They should neither be swayed by politics nor influenced by what happens on television.’
    • ‘Members of social movements use graffiti as a way of influencing the political reality of the public.’
    • ‘It's as wide as the world is round and you have to be influenced by what you see of these people.’
    • ‘I do the best I can, but I'm not that good at making friends and influencing people.’
    • ‘This sector plays a central role by influencing the public, who willingly buy into its propaganda.’
    • ‘It was really cool back then because you could see that we were influencing people and they were influencing us.’
    • ‘Given all the negative factors influencing my purchase decision, I still want to have my own car.’
    • ‘So sometimes he speaks one language and then another, depending on which group is influencing him.’
    • ‘She admits her efforts are probably influencing few opinions in the US.’
    • ‘I am not going to give you a list of suggestions, because I would like you all just to go for it without influencing your choice.’
    • ‘Long after the president might have been forgotten, his appointees would be influencing American law.’
    • ‘Ring tones are getting significant in influencing mobile phone purchase decisions.’
    affect, have an effect on, exert influence on
    sway, bias, affect, prejudice, colour, predispose, suborn
    persuade, convince, talk round, talk into, win over, bring round, sway, coax, induce, inveigle, impel, incite, entice, tempt, lure, cajole, manipulate, prompt
    View synonyms


    under the influence
    • Affected by alcoholic drink or drugs.

      • ‘he was charged with driving under the influence’
      • ‘Memory of detail does deteriorate with time especially if the person was under the influence of drink or drugs.’
      • ‘Almost half of all murders in Scotland are committed by people under the influence of drugs or drink.’
      • ‘Three more motorists caught driving under the influence of drink or drugs have lost their licences.’
      • ‘He concluded the crash was caused by Paul driving too fast while under the influence of drink and drugs.’
      • ‘If the woman had been under the influence of drink or drugs at the time of sex, then doubt could be cast upon her ability to give consent.’
      • ‘He was under the influence of drugs and drink when he wandered out to see what was going on and was caught on camera throwing a stone.’
      • ‘Bosses could soon be using a quick new eye test to tell if workers are under the influence of drugs or drink.’
      • ‘Death by careless driving while under the influence of drink should carry a manslaughter charge?’
      • ‘She spoke of her mother becoming aggressive when under the influence of drink.’
      • ‘It has also emerged that the problem of driving while under the influence of drugs is as acute as ever.’


Late Middle English from Old French, or from medieval Latin influentia ‘inflow’, from Latin influere, from in- ‘into’ + fluere ‘to flow’. The word originally had the general sense ‘an influx, flowing matter’, also specifically (in astrology) ‘the flowing in of ethereal fluid (affecting human destiny)’. The sense ‘imperceptible or indirect action exerted to cause changes’ was established in Scholastic Latin by the 13th century, but not recorded in English until the late 16th century.