con·​trived | \ kən-ˈtrīvd How to pronounce contrived (audio) \

Definition of contrived

: having an unnatural or false appearance or quality : artificial, labored a contrived plot

Examples of contrived in a Sentence

… it may remind readers of Christopher Nolan's ingeniously contrived mystery film "Memento" … — Joyce Carol Oates, New Yorker, 4 Apr. 2005 The music industry has become far more image conscious and contrived since her first album affected me so profoundly … — Lisa Marie Presley, Time, 18 Apr. 2005 There are some who scorn that sterling art form, the afternoon soap opera, alleging that its characters are unbelievable, its plots contrived and its action negligible. — Lydel Sims, Assignment: Memphis, 1982 The movie's contrived ending was a big disappointment. The results of the test seemed somewhat contrived.
Recent Examples on the Web Maisie gets to the root of the problem, but this particular subplot, which also has tentacles reaching into other parts of this story, concludes with a revelation that feels a bit too contrived. Washington Post, 26 Mar. 2022 Turning Red is spectacularly unlike those last four contrived and misshapen movies because it is grounded in the real world and derives comic energy from legitimate questions about the kinds of problems contemporary families are dealing with. Kyle Smith, National Review, 7 Mar. 2022 It is constantly re-contrived generation after generation. Rebecca Coffey, Forbes, 14 Mar. 2022 Had grander life aspirations than throwing out stupid opinions about half naked people in a contrived game for a prize that used to literally be a trunk of cash sitting there on a Tribal Council set? Dalton Ross,, 10 Mar. 2022 Although the presence of Offset, who signed with Reservoir in 2017, and a very pregnant Cardi B may have looked like a contrived photo op, Khosrowshahi says the Migos member had asked to attend the ceremony. Kristin Robinson, Billboard, 24 Feb. 2022 Team Fetterman’s message began with an air of contrived disappointment. Michael Sokolove, The New Republic, 14 Feb. 2022 The story of the end of Phat Tuesdays is nebulously told at best and the contrived reconciliation between the Torrys doesn’t feel convincing. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 4 Feb. 2022 Just don’t scratch even the slightest bit beneath its glossy, super-contrived surface. Gary Goldstein, Los Angeles Times, 3 Feb. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of contrived

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for contrived

see contrive

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The first known use of contrived was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

20 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Contrived.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 May. 2022.

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Nglish: Translation of contrived for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of contrived for Arabic Speakers


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