knotty

play
adjective knot·ty \ ˈnä-tē \

Definition of knotty

knottier; knottiest
:marked by or full of knots; especially :so full of difficulties and complications as to be likely to defy solution
  • a knotty problem

knottiness

noun

Examples of knotty in a Sentence

  1. the knotty problems that arise when every nation is part of the global marketplace

  2. the candidates cautiously gave their views on an array of knotty issues

Recent Examples of knotty from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'knotty.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of knotty

13th century

Synonym Discussion of knotty

complex, complicated, intricate, involved, knotty mean having confusingly interrelated parts. complex suggests the unavoidable result of a necessary combining and does not imply a fault or failure.
    • a complex recipe
complicated applies to what offers great difficulty in understanding, solving, or explaining.
    • complicated legal procedures
intricate suggests such interlacing of parts as to make it nearly impossible to follow or grasp them separately.
    • an intricate web of deceit
involved implies extreme complication and often disorder.
    • a rambling, involved explanation
knotty suggests complication and entanglement that make solution or understanding improbable.
    • knotty ethical questions

KNOTTY Defined for English Language Learners

knotty

play
adjective

Definition of knotty for English Language Learners

  • of wood : having many dark round marks showing where branches grew : having many knots

  • : difficult or complicated


KNOTTY Defined for Kids

knotty

play
adjective knot·ty \ ˈnä-tē \

Definition of knotty for Students

knottier; knottiest
1 :full of lumps, knobs, tangles, or hard spots
  • knotty muscles
  • knotty wood
2 :difficult 3
  • a knotty problem


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