on impulse meaning, on impulse definition | English Cobuild dictionary

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  ( impulses    plural  )
1       n-var   An impulse is a sudden desire to do something.  
oft N to-inf  
Unable to resist the impulse, he glanced at the sea again...     
2       n-count   An impulse is a short electrical signal that is sent along a wire or nerve or through the air, usually as one of a series.  
3       adj   An impulse buy or impulse purchase is something that you decide to buy when you see it, although you had not planned to buy it.  
ADJ n  
The curtains were an impulse buy.     
4    If you do something on impulse   , you suddenly decide to do it, without planning it.      
on impulse             phrase   PHR after v  
Sean's a fast thinker, and he acts on impulse...     
Translation English Cobuild Collins Dictionary  


1    catalyst, force, impetus, momentum, movement, pressure, push, stimulus, surge, thrust  
2      (figurative)   caprice, drive, feeling, incitement, inclination, influence, instinct, motive, notion, passion, resolve, urge, whim, wish  

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