abstruse

adjective
ab·​struse | \ əb-ˈstrüs How to pronounce abstruse (audio) , ab- \

Definition of abstruse

formal
: difficult to comprehend : recondite the abstruse calculations of mathematicians abstruse concepts/ideas/theories

Other Words from abstruse

abstrusely adverb
abstruseness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for abstruse

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Latin Ties Things Together With Abstruse

Look closely at the following Latin verbs, all of which are derived from the verb trudere ("to push, thrust"): extrudere, intrudere, obtrudere, protrudere. Remove the last two letters of each of these and you get an English descendant whose meaning involves pushing or thrusting. Another trudere offspring, abstrudere, meaning "to push away" or "to conceal," gave English abstrude, meaning "to thrust away," but that 17th-century borrowing has fallen out of use. An abstrudere descendant that has survived is abstruse, an adjective that recalls the meaning of its Latin parent abstrūsus, meaning "concealed."

Examples of abstruse in a Sentence

Her subject matter is abstruse. you're not the only one who finds Einstein's theory of relativity abstruse
Recent Examples on the Web The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021 The procedures are so abstruse that a parliamentarian must sit below the presiding officer and, essentially, tell him or her what to say. Margaret Talbot, The New Yorker, 11 Aug. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'abstruse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of abstruse

circa 1549, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for abstruse

borrowed from Latin abstrūsus "concealed, recondite," from past participle of abstrūdere "to conceal," from abs- (variant of ab- ab- before c- and t-) + trūdere "to push, thrust" — more at threat entry 1

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The first known use of abstruse was circa 1549

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Dictionary Entries Near abstruse

abstriction

abstruse

abstrusity

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Statistics for abstruse

Last Updated

14 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Abstruse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abstruse. Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on abstruse

Nglish: Translation of abstruse for Spanish Speakers

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