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

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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 Balancing that sanctity and ingenuity in a club's identity through creative partnership is what energizes the 2021 Nike MLB City Connect Series. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, "Arizona Diamondbacks among 7 MLB teams getting special Nike City Connect jerseys in 2021," 8 Apr. 2021 Most of the time that equates to someone who can manage the vision already in place but has the least amount of flexibility to bring the creativity, inclusivity and ingenuity needed when systems and processes need to be improved quickly. Aprina Johnson, The Enquirer, "Opinion: Nothing will change until hearts and minds change," 8 Apr. 2021 Automating these processes takes two things: the right software and the ingenuity to make the best use of the software. Gareth Parkin, Forbes, "Creative Ways Automation Can Improve Your Sales Processes," 6 Apr. 2021 But the ingenuity, and the hardships, of the leaders of small businesses are just as notable. Phil Wahba, Fortune, "The pandemic ingenuity of small businesses," 2 Apr. 2021 After some ingenuity and stenciling, Kaselak turned the disaster into a multi-colored masterpiece. Alexis Oatman, cleveland, "‘We just want to make everyone happy:’ Euclid’s Jellybeanville display marks 60th anniversary this Easter," 1 Apr. 2021 That the movie exists at all is a testament to Hollywood’s desperation—and occasional ingenuity—in finding original stories. Adam Epstein, Quartz, "The first movie based on a viral Twitter thread now has a trailer," 31 Mar. 2021 Compact Design Small space living demands a certain degree of ingenuity. Popular Science, "Best ergonomic desk: Sit comfortably with better posture," 9 Mar. 2021 Matt Ridley’s celebration of ingenuity, How Innovation Works, is complementary to Tierney and Baumeister’s book. Tevi Troy, National Review, "A Year in Reading: Books in the Time of COVID," 31 Dec. 2020

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.

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First Known Use of ingenuity

circa 1592, in the meaning defined at sense 3

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Time Traveler for ingenuity

Time Traveler

The first known use of ingenuity was circa 1592

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Statistics for ingenuity

Last Updated

12 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Ingenuity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for ingenuity



English Language Learners Definition of ingenuity

: skill or cleverness that allows someone to solve problems, invent things, etc.
: a clever device or method


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

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