ma·​chin·​ery | \ mə-ˈshē-nə-rē How to pronounce machinery (audio) , -ˈshēn-rē \
plural machineries

Definition of machinery

1a : machines in general or as a functioning unit
b : the working parts of a machine
2 : the means or system by which something is kept in action or a desired result is obtained the machinery of government

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web This means everything—from the packaging to the machinery to their business process—has been designed to ensure their materials remain in circulation after initial use. Anna Haines, Forbes, 30 Sep. 2021 Besides the size of the boulders and fears of more landslides, the search is also being slowed by the neighborhood's narrow, steep paths which are largely inaccessible to heavy machinery. MarÍa Verza, ajc, 12 Sep. 2021 The low-altitude high of aerotrekking is possible thanks to machinery that resembles a motorcycle with ultralight wings. Dennis Wagner, The Arizona Republic, 23 June 2021 Central to that machinery are NSP9, which locks onto the virus’ RNA strand, and the RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) that copies the RNA. Robert F. Service, Science | AAAS, 11 Mar. 2021 The title track to their recent album, the video was directed by Alfred Marroquín and features the sibling duo in shiny blue bodysuits, hooked up to machinery and fluorescent lights. Angie Martoccio, Rolling Stone, 25 Feb. 2021 But their framework, when subject to the machinery of online outrage, quickly unraveled. Isaac Stanley-becker, Anchorage Daily News, 3 Jan. 2021 Unlimited Hydroplanes are spectacular pieces of machinery. Bill Center, San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Sep. 2021 Like any piece of machinery, lawn mowers need regular maintenance to work properly and efficiently. Lynn Coulter, Better Homes & Gardens, 15 Sep. 2021

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

1687, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Time Traveler for machinery

Time Traveler

The first known use of machinery was in 1687

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Dictionary Entries Near machinery

machine room


machine screw

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Statistics for machinery

Last Updated

16 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Machinery.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for machinery



English Language Learners Definition of machinery

: machines of a particular kind or machines in general
: the working parts of a machine
: an organization or system by which something is done


ma·​chin·​ery | \ mə-ˈshē-nə-rē How to pronounce machinery (audio) , -ˈshēn-rē \

Kids Definition of machinery

1 : a group of devices with moving parts that are used to perform specific jobs
2 : the working parts of a device used to perform a particular job
3 : the people and equipment by which something is done the machinery of government

More from Merriam-Webster on machinery

Nglish: Translation of machinery for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of machinery for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about machinery


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