Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Medical
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

contrivance

play
noun con·triv·ance \kən-ˈtrī-vən(t)s\

Simple Definition of contrivance

  • : something that causes things to happen in a story in a way that does not seem natural or believable

  • : the use of contrivances in a story

  • : a machine or piece of equipment made with skill and cleverness

Full Definition of contrivance

  1. 1 a :  a thing contrived; especially :  a mechanical device b :  an artificial arrangement or development

  2. 2 :  the act or faculty of contriving :  the state of being contrived

Examples of contrivance

  1. The story is filled with plot contrivances that do not fit the ending.

  2. He told the story honestly and without contrivance.

  3. a contrivance to get out of doing the work

  4. He convinced her to go without using contrivance.



Circa 1628

First Known Use of contrivance

circa 1628


CONTRIVANCE Defined for Kids

contrivance

play
noun con·triv·ance \kən-ˈtrī-vəns\

Definition of contrivance

  1. :  something (as a scheme or a mechanical device) produced with skill and cleverness





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up contrivance? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

February 13, 2016

a trying or distressing experience

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

image33683556

How much does a batman (the Turkish unit of measurement) weigh?

100 pounds 16.96 pounds 2.2 pounds 196.5 pounds
Name That Thing

10 quick questions: hear them, spell them, and see how your skills compare to the crowd.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ