in·​tri·​ca·​cy | \ˈin-tri-kə-sē \
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

The insurmountable task of deconstructing this soup, researchers note, is akin to unlocking every intricacy and benefit of breast milk. Jolene Edgar, Allure, "The Truth About Growth Factors in Skin Care and Why They're Controversial," 2 Aug. 2018 The inexperience will remain evident throughout the season, as players learn the intricacies of their secondary positions. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers mailbag: Will Michael Fulmer really be traded?," 10 July 2018 The genomic test, which is costly but is usually covered by insurance, breaks down cancer’s intricacies by measuring the function of 21 genes in a tumor (removed via a lumpectomy or mastectomy) to tabulate a score from zero to 100. Elizabeth Varnell, Vogue, "Many Women With Breast Cancer Can Now Skip Chemo, According to a New Study," 4 June 2018 Even before Mr Erdogan intruded so clumsily on its independence, the Turkish central bank was known for monetary intricacy. The Economist, "Turkey’s central bank has streamlined its fight against inflation," 31 May 2018 How long Nikolich spends on each piece depends on the intricacy of the design or lettering. Claire Wolters,, "Meet the Philly artist who yarn bombing around the city to attract Taylor Swift's attention," 10 July 2018 There’s a lot going on here, which leads to a whole lot of gassy exposition to explain it all, including two separate scenes in which two different groups of good guys are tied to chairs while villains bloviate on the intricacies of the plot. Soren Andersen, The Seattle Times, "‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’: Paul Rudd is back in busy little sequel," 2 July 2018 After they're seated, Brock gently coaches Bourdain on the intricacies of Waffle House hash brown phraseology. Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, "Watch Anthony Bourdain's First Meal at Waffle House: "It Is Indeed Marvelous"," 13 June 2018 How the Case Unfolded, According to Authorities Investigators were at first baffled by the arcane intricacies of the crime but honed in within a few years on Diehl-Armstrong. Chris Harris,, "The Bizarre Real-Life Story of the Pizza Guy Who Robbed a Bank with a Bomb Around His Neck," 21 May 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

12 Nov 2018

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 \
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

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