in·​tri·​ca·​cy | \ ˈin-tri-kə-sē How to pronounce intricacy (audio) \
plural intricacies

Definition of intricacy

1 : the quality or state of being intricate
2 : something intricate the intricacies of a plot

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Examples of intricacy in a Sentence

She admired the composition for its beauty and intricacy. I had trouble following all the intricacies in the plot. the intricacies of English grammar
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Recent Examples on the Web

Understanding why requires a journey into the intricacies of Israel’s raucous electoral system—and shows how desperate Israel’s clashing political blocs are for every vote in an election that pollsters expect to be tight. Lahav Harkov, WSJ, "Why Cannabis Legalization Could Decide Israel’s Next Prime Minister," 4 Apr. 2019 Sheriff credits rapper Diddy for introducing her to the intricacies of lighting. Janell Hickman, Allure, "Taraji P. Henson's Makeup Artist, Ashunta Sheriff, Had the Perfect Response for Trolls Who Questioned Her Talent," 25 Aug. 2018 The union celebrated the year’s outstanding work in film and television highlighting the intricacies of contemporary, period and sci-fi or fantasy designs. Jonathan Landrum Jr., The Seattle Times, "Costume Designers Guild honors Ruth E. Carter, Glenn Close," 20 Feb. 2019 For a few hours, at least, Mr. Trump put the intricacies of governing in his rearview mirror, attending a Republican convention on the outskirts of the city here, a private event for Senator Dean Heller and a tax-focused round-table discussion. Katie Rogers, New York Times, "Trump Appeals to Republicans in Las Vegas, Leaving Behind Washington’s Legislative Chaos," 23 June 2018 The intricacies of dressing the fashionable Victorian woman were demonstrated by three models. Ruth Sowby Rands,, "On the Town: Women’s Council donates $20,000 to USC Verdugo Hills Hospital," 19 June 2018 Ram, the director of Regional Security and Arms Transfers for the U.S. Department of State, discusses the state of the world and explores the intricacies of Middle Eastern politics. Hal Boedeker,, "Jeff Greene, John Mina: Weekend TV guests," 5 July 2018 Love the beautiful intricacy of the team game and the amazing artistry of the individual one. Tara Sullivan,, "For the future of US men’s soccer, now comes the hard part," 24 June 2018 Altogether, about 30 pieces of public works equipment were on display for some wide-eyed children (and even the adults) to look at, climb upon and blow an occasional horn with city personnel describing the intricacies of the vehicles. Daniel I. Dorfman,, "Lake Forest puts its trucks on display, to the delight of kids (and some of their parents)," 11 June 2018

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

1602, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for intricacy

Last Updated

16 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for intricacy

The first known use of intricacy was in 1602

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More Definitions for intricacy



English Language Learners Definition of intricacy

: the quality or state of being complex or having many parts : the quality or state of being intricate
: something that is complex or detailed : something intricate


in·​tri·​ca·​cy | \ ˈin-tri-kə-sē How to pronounce intricacy (audio) \
plural intricacies

Kids Definition of intricacy

1 : the quality or state of being complex or having many parts
2 : something that is complex or has many parts

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More from Merriam-Webster on intricacy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for intricacy

Spanish Central: Translation of intricacy

Nglish: Translation of intricacy for Spanish Speakers

Comments on intricacy

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marked by a state of overwhelming emotion

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