intelligence

noun
in·tel·li·gence | \ in-ˈte-lə-jən(t)s \

Definition of intelligence 

1a(1) : the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations : reason also : the skilled use of reason

(2) : the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one's environment or to think abstractly as measured by objective criteria (such as tests)

c : mental acuteness : shrewdness

b Christian Science : the basic eternal quality of divine Mind

2a : information, news

b : information concerning an enemy or possible enemy or an area also : an agency engaged in obtaining such information

3 : the act of understanding : comprehension

4 : the ability to perform computer functions

5a : intelligent minds or mind cosmic intelligence

b : an intelligent entity especially : angel

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Examples of intelligence in a Sentence

She impressed us with her superior intelligence. a person of average intelligence gathering intelligence about a neighboring country's activities
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Recent Examples on the Web

But he was taken aback when members of the intelligence community reached out to the company. Hiawatha Bray, BostonGlobe.com, "Tech community wrestles over working with government," 13 July 2018 Given Britain’s military experience, its arms industry and its intelligence agencies, that is self-defeating. The Economist, "The Western alliance is in trouble," 5 July 2018 The Lipizzan breed, which originated in the late 16th century in Austria, is known for its strength, elegance and intelligence. Sheryl Devore, Lake County News-Sun, "'It's a labor of love': Tempel Farms celebrates 60 years of raising and training Lipizzans," 15 June 2018 His rise from undrafted free agent to Super Bowl champion was a testament to his intelligence, character and athleticism. Rich Campbell, chicagotribune.com, "Had to be 'U': Tight end Trey Burton's transformative position in the Bears offense," 13 July 2018 Cimon's brain will constantly be updated by IBM so its intelligence — and role — keep growing. Marcia Dunn, OrlandoSentinel.com, "SpaceX delivers AI robot, ice cream, mice to space station," 2 July 2018 Cimon’s brain will constantly be updated by IBM so its intelligence — and role — keep growing. Washington Post, "SpaceX delivers AI robot, ice cream, mice to space station," 2 July 2018 Jack would have been attracted to Alicia’s beauty, of course, but also her intelligence. Denise Davidson, sandiegouniontribune.com, "In 'The Summer I Met Jack,' author Michelle Gable finds the real-life connection," 1 July 2018 Your strength and intelligence can be your weapons. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Are Chris Pratt and Katherine Schwarzenegger Dating?," 19 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

History and Etymology for intelligence

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin intelligentia, from intelligent-, intelligens intelligent

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Phrases Related to intelligence

insult someone's intelligence

Statistics for intelligence

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for intelligence

The first known use of intelligence was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for intelligence

intelligence

noun

English Language Learners Definition of intelligence

: the ability to learn or understand things or to deal with new or difficult situations

: secret information that a government collects about an enemy or possible enemy; also : a government organization that collects such information

intelligence

noun
in·tel·li·gence | \ in-ˈte-lə-jəns \

Kids Definition of intelligence

1 : the ability to learn and understand The test measures intelligence.

2 : secret information collected about an enemy or a possible enemy

intelligence

noun
in·tel·li·gence | \ in-ˈtel-ə-jən(t)s \

Medical Definition of intelligence 

1a : the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations

b : the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one's environment or to think abstractly as measured by objective criteria (as tests)

2 : mental acuteness

Other words from intelligence

intelligent \in-ˈtel-ə-jənt \ adjective
intelligently adverb

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