in·​ter·​sect | \ ˌin-tər-ˈsekt How to pronounce intersect (audio) \
intersected; intersecting; intersects

Definition of intersect

transitive verb

: to pierce or divide by passing through or across : cross a comet intersecting earth's orbit one line intersects another

intransitive verb

1 : to meet and cross at a point lines intersecting at right angles
2 : to share a common area : overlap where morality and self-interest intersect

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Synonyms for intersect


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Examples of intersect in a Sentence

A dry stream bed intersects the trail in several places. Line A intersects with line B. The two roads intersect at the edge of town.
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Recent Examples on the Web Where two zones intersect, the countries are obligated to reach a settlement. Paul Tugwell,, "The Conflicts That Keep Turkey and Greece at Odds," 11 Sep. 2020 Appropriately, Dad’s pulsar map looks like a fancy asterisk, a radial explosion of hatched lines that intersect at our solar system’s location. National Geographic, "NASA sent a map to space to help aliens find Earth. Now it needs an update.," 10 Sep. 2020 Their staples include juniper berries, mesquite beans, eggs, insects and even garbage and small pets where their territories intersect human populations. Mare Czinar, The Arizona Republic, "Wildlife hike: You could see pronghorns on this trail near Flagstaff. Here's how to do it," 5 Sep. 2020 The caramel sauce is beyond dreamy, but that’s what happens when skill and Hope Butter, one of the state’s great food products, intersect. Rick Nelson, Star Tribune, "5 best things our food critic ate in the Twin Cities this week," 28 Aug. 2020 But at this price, in this spec, Osprey's creation represents the Defender Singularity, the point where new and used prices intersect. Ezra Dyer, Car and Driver, "2020 Osprey Defender Reimagines the Classic Land Rover Defender," 27 Aug. 2020 This is not to say that Christians cannot enjoy a healthy transactional relationship with the Republican Party when their interests intersect. Cameron Hilditch, National Review, "Put Not Your Trust in Princes (nor in Republicans)," 4 Sep. 2020 But at some point, those pixels on Bloomberg screens intersect with actual human experience, right? Timothy Noah, The New Republic, "Wall Street’s Greedy Indifference to Human Misery," 3 Sep. 2020 Neural pathways thrive in the brain of a baby showered with loving attention; the pathways multiply, intersect, and loop through remote regions of the brain like a national highway system under construction. Melissa Fay Greene, The Atlantic, "Can an Unloved Child Learn to Love?," 18 June 2020

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

1615, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for intersect

Latin intersectus, past participle of intersecare, from inter- + secare to cut — more at saw

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Time Traveler for intersect

Time Traveler

The first known use of intersect was in 1615

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Statistics for intersect

Last Updated

19 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Intersect.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for intersect


How to pronounce intersect (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of intersect

: to divide (something) by passing through or across it
: to meet and cross at one or more points
: to share some common area


in·​ter·​sect | \ ˌin-tər-ˈsekt How to pronounce intersect (audio) \
intersected; intersecting

Kids Definition of intersect

: to cut or divide by passing through or across : cross One line intersects the other.

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