over·​in·​ge·​nious ˌō-vər-in-ˈjēn-yəs How to pronounce overingenious (audio)
: excessively or unnecessarily ingenious or clever
an overingenious theory/plot/argument
It is impossible to say of Rashi, as we might of a secular critic writing about a poem or novel, that he is overingenious, interpreting things that need no interpretation.Adam Kirsch
He turns the man's conduct over in his mind, and tries to find excuses for him, and he is overingenious in doing so.Sabine Baring-Gould
overingenuity noun
… we are likely to understand him [Shakespeare] better if we assume that he knew what he was doing every minute, even at the risk of an occasional exercise in overingenuity on our part. Harry Levin

Word History

First Known Use

1849, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of overingenious was in 1849

Dictionary Entries Near overingenious

Cite this Entry

“Overingenious.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/overingenious. Accessed 24 Jul. 2024.

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