in·​ge·​nu·​i·​ty | \ ˌin-jə-ˈnü-ə-tē How to pronounce ingenuity (audio) , -ˈnyü- \
plural ingenuities

Definition of ingenuity

1a : skill or cleverness in devising or combining : inventiveness
b : cleverness or aptness of design or contrivance
2 : an ingenious device or contrivance
3 obsolete : candor, ingenuousness

Examples of ingenuity in a Sentence

She showed amazing ingenuity in finding ways to cut costs. It will take considerable ingenuity to fix these problems.
Recent Examples on the Web Expressing the capabilities and ingenuity of the Bespoke department is the Phantom Platino, a singular masterpiece named for the element platinum. Robert Ross, Robb Report, 12 May 2022 Some of these ideas won't cost you anything, except for a little time and ingenuity! Irene Richardson, Country Living, 10 May 2022 Those are all signs of the kind of ingenuity and collaboration that ultimately could not only repair the grid but also buoy the island’s society and economy, too. Xander Peters, The Christian Science Monitor, 9 May 2022 The thought and ingenuity that went into the staircase design probably saved my own kneecaps multiple times throughout my stay. Mike Goldys, USA TODAY, 7 May 2022 The movie 21 highlights the thrill of manufacturing luck with ingenuity and skill in a way anyone whose bank account has been at the mercy of Las Vegas casinos. Keith Nelson, Men's Health, 30 Apr. 2022 But when devastating things happen, creativity and ingenuity often thrive and reinforce our resilience. Bija Bennett, Rolling Stone, 18 Apr. 2022 The Grammys, as distinct from the zillion other awards shows vying for viewers’ ever-shrinking interest in them, are meant to celebrate skill, taste, wisdom, ingenuity. Los Angeles Times, 4 Apr. 2022 The exhibit includes several examples of the restoration team’s ingenuity. Washington Post, 4 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of ingenuity

circa 1592, in the meaning defined at sense 3

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The first known use of ingenuity was circa 1592

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Last Updated

19 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Ingenuity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for ingenuity


in·​ge·​nu·​ity | \ ˌin-jə-ˈnü-ə-tē How to pronounce ingenuity (audio) , -ˈnyü- \
plural ingenuities

Kids Definition of ingenuity

: skill or cleverness in discovering, inventing, or planning

More from Merriam-Webster on ingenuity

Nglish: Translation of ingenuity for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ingenuity for Arabic Speakers


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