in·​tan·​gi·​ble | \ (ˌ)in-ˈtan-jə-bəl How to pronounce intangible (audio) \

Definition of intangible

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: not tangible : impalpable education's intangible benefits



Definition of intangible (Entry 2 of 2)

: something intangible: such as
a : an asset (such as goodwill) that is not corporeal
b : an abstract quality or attribute

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Other Words from intangible


intangibility \ in-​ˌtan-​jə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce intangibility (audio) \ noun
intangibleness \ in-​ˈtan-​jə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce intangibleness (audio) \ noun
intangibly \ in-​ˈtan-​jə-​blē How to pronounce intangibly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for intangible

Synonyms: Adjective


Antonyms: Adjective

palpable, tactile, tangible, touchable

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Examples of intangible in a Sentence


Leadership is an intangible asset to a company. electrical energy is completely intangible

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

But the nostalgia is intangible, some tonal balance struck in a recipe that didn’t necessarily call for it. Nicole Blackwood,, "‘Grandma’s House’ open mic builds chosen family from poetry performance," 25 June 2019 David Owen reports on noise pollution, an intangible phenomenon with serious costs to human health and wildlife. Ashley Franklin, The New Yorker, "A Victim of True-Crime Podcasts," 6 June 2019 This ability was based on intangible factors that caused Lyers to actually perceive pathos as having long noses, a dead giveaway. Quanta Magazine, "The Bulldogs That Bulldogs Fight," 17 Apr. 2019 And, like the name suggests, there was an intangible comfort that came with having a ritual. Blake Bakkila, Good Housekeeping, "What Is Ritual? Everything You Need to Know About the Multivitamin That Cuts the Shady Extras," 1 May 2019 Advertising Taken together, the bans, purges and deletions of years’ worth of online material represent a loss that’s hard to absorb — blending the disappearance of intangible artifacts, art, music, communities and novel forms of communication. Hamza Shaban, The Seattle Times, "Loss of old Myspace artifacts highlights the impermanence of the web," 24 Mar. 2019 My advice here tends to be for brands to try to really engage with their consumers, build a community (not just a pool of random shoppers), and bring intangible things to the table, such as experiences, things that cannot be copied. Alyssa Hardy, Teen Vogue, "Imitation In Fashion is a Huge Problem, But It's Probably Not Going Anywhere," 13 Mar. 2019 Ohtani was even more captivated by the Harada Method Long-Term Goal Form, which has students come up with tangible and intangible reasons for pursuing a goal, both for one’s self and for society. Jared Diamond, WSJ, "How Shohei Ohtani Visualized His Baseball Success," 11 Sep. 2018 And for anyone unsatisfied with the intangible nature of the digital message, a physical version of the post was also on display to commemorate the momentous occasion. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Queen Elizabeth Posted on Instagram for the First Time, Featuring a Letter to Prince Albert," 7 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At 5-11, he’s considered undersized for the NBA, but his skill level, quickness, defensive tenacity, court sense and intangibles are high. Dom Amore,, "NBA Draft: UConn’s Jalen Adams, Yale’s Miye Oni, New Haven’s Tremont Waters among local hopefuls," 19 June 2019 Those intangibles can only be found with diversity and, in my mind, are essential in any successful organization. Rusty Simmons,, "Warriors among leaders in hiring women execs, but ‘still a lot of work to be done’," 9 June 2019 Instead, remember the display of intangibles on display at Roaracle. Dieter Kurtenbach, The Mercury News, "Kurtenbach: Warriors had the championship heart, just not the championship bodies," 13 June 2019 Early on, Tom saw in Brad a work ethic, intangibles and a toughness. Marc Bona,, "Father’s Day 2019: For Indians broadcaster Tom Hamilton and son Brad baseball is a special bond," 12 June 2019 The service, the setting, the value, the intangibles. Mike Sutter,, "Zero-star review: Grey Moss Inn falls behind the times northwest of San Antonio," 6 June 2019 But Mann said his intangibles, like his basketball IQ, also could help him contribute to an NBA team. Roy Parry,, "Former FSU guard Terance Mann works out for Orlando Magic," 3 June 2019 And pundits and former players continue to chip away at the intangibles, looking for cracks in the foundation and wondering whether this generation of Frenchmen will succumb to the distractions or selfishness that bedeviled many predecessors. Brian Straus,, "France Keeps Growing Into a World Cup It's Talented Enough to Win," 26 June 2018 Note: Tangible value of net assets excludes goodwill and other intangibles. Michael Rapoport, WSJ, "How GE Built Up and Wrote Down $22 Billion in Assets," 13 Mar. 2019

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


1640, in the meaning defined above


1914, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for intangible


French or Medieval Latin; French, from Medieval Latin intangibilis, from Latin in- + Late Latin tangibilis tangible

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Statistics for intangible

Last Updated

4 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for intangible

The first known use of intangible was in 1640

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More Definitions for intangible



English Language Learners Definition of intangible

: not made of physical substance : not able to be touched : not tangible


in·​tan·​gi·​ble | \ in-ˈtan-jə-bəl How to pronounce intangible (audio) \

Kids Definition of intangible

1 : not capable of being touched Light is intangible.
2 : not having physical substance Goodwill is an intangible asset.


in·​tan·​gi·​ble | \ in-ˈtan-jə-bəl How to pronounce intangible (audio) \

Legal Definition of intangible

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: incapable of being touched : having no physical existence : not tangible or corporeal



Legal Definition of intangible (Entry 2 of 2)

: something intangible specifically : an asset (as goodwill or a patent right) that is not corporeal

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More from Merriam-Webster on intangible

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with intangible

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for intangible

Spanish Central: Translation of intangible

Nglish: Translation of intangible for Spanish Speakers

Comments on intangible

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food or victuals

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