ma·​chin·​ery mə-ˈshē-nə-rē How to pronounce machinery (audio)
plural machineries
: machines in general or as a functioning unit
: the working parts of a machine
: the means or system by which something is kept in action or a desired result is obtained
the machinery of government

Examples of machinery in a Sentence

Some of the mill's machinery was damaged in the fire. a piece of farm machinery Something was clogging the machinery. The United Nations has set up machinery for mediation.
Recent Examples on the Web Through specialized machinery, the denim is colored—utilizing a secret formula for the brand’s signature blue—and then stained and sandblasted. Robb Report Studio, Robb Report, 13 Feb. 2024 Mark’s Place: New projects tug at superstar chef/owner Mark Militello, but the machinery he’s put into place here still hums. Miami Herald Archives, Miami Herald, 8 Feb. 2024 Now what takes nature perhaps a billion years and a great deal of happenstance can be accomplished in a factory in a few weeks with the right machinery, the right materials—including a sliver of diamond that acts as a seed—and enough skilled technicians. Amanda Mull, The Atlantic, 7 Feb. 2024 In other words, our mathematical machinery is unable to detect if this sequence is deterministic or random junk (even after infinitely many samples). Christopher Lutsko, Scientific American, 30 Jan. 2024 The most common causes of injuries include fires, falls, fatigue, machinery malfunctions, and lack of safety culture on rigs, according to Arnold & Itkin. Sunny Nagpaul, Fortune, 27 Jan. 2024 Their importance stemmed from making and repairing machinery prior to the advent of mass production and factories. Steve Metsch and Andrea Field, Chicago Tribune, 26 Jan. 2024 His mother, Adele (Dougherty) Mills, was a pianist, and his father, Alfred, sold gaskets used to prevent leaks in machinery. Clay Risen, New York Times, 26 Jan. 2024 In past centuries, the machinery of war would grind to a halt when harsh conditions pushed human endurance to its limits. Eric Schmidt, Foreign Affairs, 22 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'machinery.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1731, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of machinery was in 1731

Dictionary Entries Near machinery

Cite this Entry

“Machinery.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


ma·​chin·​ery mə-ˈshēn-(ə-)rē How to pronounce machinery (audio)
plural machineries
: machines in general
: the working parts of a machine or instrument
: the organization or system by which something is done or carried on
machinery of government

More from Merriam-Webster on machinery

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