Definition of difficulty
1 : the quality or state of being hard to do, deal with, or understand : the quality or state of being difficult underestimated the difficulty of the task has difficulty reading climbs stairs with difficulty
3 : objection made no difficulty in granting the request
4 : something difficult : impediment encountering difficulties along the way
Examples of difficulty in a Sentence
She underestimated the difficulty of saving so much money.
the many difficulties that he encountered on the road from poor orphan to head of a major corporation
Recent Examples of difficulty from the Web
One group was directed to report the common side effects of chemo — including nausea, pain, fatigue and difficulty in breathing — at least once a week using an electronic tablet or other kind of computer.
Bilden cited privacy concerns and the difficulty of separating from his business interests.
Delivery is attracting young customers, Easterbrook said, a group that McDonald's has had difficulty winning from competitors in recent years.
A set of state-level Census findings, also analyzed by Griffin and Teixeira, underscores the difficulty of reversing the long-term contraction of the white working-class, even for a candidate as dedicated as Trump to mobilizing them.
VanderWall was aware of the difficulty of beating the same team three times in a season.
Five pieces have been selected for the play-along that can be downloaded from the website in three levels of difficulty (mainlymozart.org/san-diego-makes-music).
The enforcement underscores the difficulty regulators face in keeping fraud out of the mortgage market, and prosecuting individuals who break regulations.
But the losses do provide a window into how even the blue-blooded Yankees, who have been largely impervious to the market forces that have affected the rest of baseball, have had difficulty maintaining their audience.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'difficulty'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of difficulty
Middle English difficulte, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French difficulté, from Latin difficultas, from difficilis not easy, from dis- + facilis easy — more at facile
First Known Use: 14th century
DIFFICULTY Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of difficulty for English Language Learners
: the quality of something that makes it hard to do : the difficult nature of something
: something that is not easy to do or to deal with : a difficult situation
: a disagreement in opinion
DIFFICULTY Defined for Kids
Definition of difficulty for Students
1 : the state of being hard to do the difficulty of a task
2 : great effort He solved the puzzle with difficulty.
3 : something that makes something hard to do : obstacle She overcame great difficulties to achieve success.
4 : a troublesome situation She saw a way out of the difficulty.
Seen and Heard
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