Definition of contrivance
1a : a thing contrived; especially : a mechanical device modern contrivances to cook food fasterb : an artificial arrangement or development Mistaken identity is used as a plot contrivance in the story.
2 : the act or faculty of contriving : the state of being contrived
Examples of contrivance in a Sentence
The story is filled with plot contrivances that do not fit the ending.
He told the story honestly and without contrivance.
a contrivance to get out of doing the work
He convinced her to go without using contrivance.
Recent Examples of contrivance from the Web
These utilitarian precinct house images, stripped of artistry and contrivance, reveal celebrities at their most real.
English spelling is a terrible mess anyway, full of arbitrary contrivances and exceptions that outnumber rules.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'contrivance'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of contrivance
First Known Use: circa 1628
CONTRIVANCE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of contrivance for English Language Learners
: 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
CONTRIVANCE Defined for Kids
Definition of contrivance for Students
: something (as a scheme or a mechanical device) produced with skill and cleverness
Seen and Heard
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