in·​de·​ci·​pher·​able | \ ˌin-di-ˈsī-f(ə-)rə-bəl How to pronounce indecipherable (audio) \

Definition of indecipherable

: incapable of being deciphered indecipherable writing an indecipherable message

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Other Words from indecipherable

indecipherably \ ˌin-​di-​ˈsī-​f(ə-​)rə-​blē How to pronounce indecipherably (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for indecipherable


illegible, undecipherable, unreadable


clean, decipherable, fair, legible, readable

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Examples of indecipherable in a Sentence

His handwriting is almost indecipherable. after so many years the paper label in the drawer of the antique desk is indecipherable

Recent Examples on the Web

The writing increasingly became more indecipherable., "Police shootings in Arizona," 10 Sep. 2019 Nayeri’s attorney Salvatore Cuilla returned to an exhibit presented by prosecutors — a notebook filled with lists and indecipherable phrases written by the defendant. Julia Sclafani, Daily Pilot, "With shouts and tears, man accused of kidnapping, torturing Newport dispensary owner claims he’s been wronged," 6 Aug. 2019 The fuzzy lunar feed was almost indecipherable on the small TV placed in the back of the empty theater. Andrew Daniels, Popular Mechanics, "25 Great Moon Landing Stories from Popular Mechanics Readers," 20 July 2019 The indecipherable red and white blotches were placed seemingly at random and, coupled with the contrasting shades of blue made for a god-awful mess., "50 Worst Football Shirts of All Time," 3 July 2019 Its characters, mastered by women and indecipherable to men, appear in thin, downward-slanting wisps, like spider legs dancing across paper. Vogue, "This All-Female DJ Collective Wants to Empower the Women of Shanghai’s Nocturnal World," 15 May 2019 As of April 22, that is 11 straight days of essentially indecipherable Taylor Swift clues, and enough is enough. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Taylor Swift's Cryptic Social Media Clues Have Reached a Breaking Point," 23 Apr. 2019 Changes measured in millimeters sound indecipherable, the kind of tweaks only an engineer doing drag coefficient testing down to the twelfth decimal place wold notice. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "2019 Chevy Blazer Test Drive: What Happened When GM Tried To Make the Crossover Cool," 4 Feb. 2019 Confusing deadlines, indecipherable ballot measures and voter suppression tactics. Vera Papisova, Teen Vogue, "Midterms 2018: First-Time Voters Explain What They Learned This Election," 7 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'indecipherable.' 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 indecipherable

1802, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for indecipherable

Last Updated

13 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for indecipherable

The first known use of indecipherable was in 1802

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More Definitions for indecipherable



English Language Learners Definition of indecipherable

: impossible to read or understand : not decipherable

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More from Merriam-Webster on indecipherable

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for indecipherable

Spanish Central: Translation of indecipherable

Nglish: Translation of indecipherable for Spanish Speakers

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