Thesaurus

intricate

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of intricate

1 having many parts or aspects that are usually interrelated
  • an intricate machine that requires some training to use it properly

Synonyms for intricate

Words Related to intricate

Near Antonyms for intricate

Antonyms for intricate

2 made or done with great care or with much detail
  • an intricate hairstyle that requires far too much maintenance to suit my taste

Synonyms for intricate

Words Related to intricate

Near Antonyms for intricate

Antonyms for intricate

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About intricate

How does the adjective intricate differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of intricate are complex, complicated, involved, and knotty. While all these words mean "having confusingly interrelated parts," intricate suggests such interlacing of parts as to make it nearly impossible to follow or grasp them separately.

an intricate web of deceit

When could complex be used to replace intricate?

In some situations, the words complex and intricate are roughly equivalent. However, complex suggests the unavoidable result of a necessary combining and does not imply a fault or failure.

a complex recipe

When is complicated a more appropriate choice than intricate?

The words complicated and intricate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, complicated applies to what offers great difficulty in understanding, solving, or explaining.

complicated legal procedures

Where would involved be a reasonable alternative to intricate?

The words involved and intricate can be used in similar contexts, but involved implies extreme complication and often disorder.

a rambling, involved explanation

When might knotty be a better fit than intricate?

The synonyms knotty and intricate are sometimes interchangeable, but knotty suggests complication and entanglement that make solution or understanding improbable.

knotty ethical questions

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about intricate

Time Traveler for intricate

Time Traveler

The first known use of intricate was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Cite this Entry

“Intricate.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/intricate. Accessed 6 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on intricate

Dictionary: Definition of intricate

Nglish: Translation of intricate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of intricate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on intricate

What made you want to look up intricate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Who Knew?

True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!