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How to pronounce intrinsic (audio)


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Dictionary definition of intrinsic

Inherent or innate, existing naturally and not acquired through external means.
"The intrinsic qualities of the material made it ideal for the application."


Detailed meaning of intrinsic

It is an adjective used to describe qualities or characteristics that are part of the essential nature of a thing or person. It implies that the characteristic or quality is an inherent part of the thing or person, rather than something that has been added or acquired. For example, a person might say that honesty is intrinsic to a person's nature, meaning that it is a natural part of their character. Or, one might say that beauty is intrinsic to a piece of art, meaning that it is inherent to its design or creation.

In general, the term implies that there is something that is inherent or innate, existing naturally and not acquired through external means, whether it's a characteristic, a quality, or a feature, and that it is an inherent part of the thing or person, rather than something that has been added or acquired, whether it's in personal, professional or artistic scenarios.

Example sentences containing intrinsic

1. The intrinsic value of a diamond lies in its clarity and cut.
2. The artist's work reflected an intrinsic understanding of color and composition.
3. Learning is driven by an intrinsic curiosity for knowledge.
4. The beauty of nature's landscapes has an intrinsic appeal to many people.
5. The company's success can be attributed to its employees' intrinsic motivation.
6. The joy of music comes from its intrinsic ability to evoke emotions.

History and etymology of intrinsic

The adjective 'intrinsic' traces its origins to Latin. It is derived from the Latin word 'intrinsecus,' which means 'on the inside' or 'from within.' 'Intrinsecus' is a combination of 'intra,' meaning 'within,' and 'secus,' meaning 'beside' or 'alongside.' In Latin, 'intrinsecus' was used to describe qualities or attributes that existed naturally from within and were inherent rather than acquired from external sources. As the term entered the English language, it retained this sense of being inherent or innate, emphasizing that certain characteristics or properties are an integral part of something's nature and originate from within rather than being added or imposed from the outside. 'Intrinsic' conveys the idea that these qualities are fundamental and essential, reflecting its Latin roots in the concept of being from within or on the inside.

Quiz: Find the meaning of intrinsic

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Further usage examples of intrinsic

1. The intrinsic properties of gold make it a highly valued precious metal.
2. Honesty and integrity are intrinsic qualities of a trustworthy individual.
3. The intrinsic value of a friendship lies in the deep connection and support it offers.
4. The intrinsic nature of love is to give without expecting anything in return.
5. The intrinsic beauty of a sunset captivates and inspires us.
6. The child's laughter was an intrinsic part of their playful personality.
7. The intrinsic complexity of mathematics challenges and stimulates the mind.
8. The intrinsic value of a book lies in the knowledge and wisdom it imparts.
9. The intrinsic nature of justice is to uphold fairness and equality.
10. The intrinsic grace of a ballet dancer mesmerizes the audience.
11. The intrinsic aroma of freshly brewed coffee is enticing.
12. The intrinsic value of a work of art is subjective and varies from person to person.
13. The intrinsic joy of gardening lies in nurturing and witnessing the growth of plants.
14. The intrinsic strength of a community comes from its members' unity and support.



inherent, extrinsic, acquired, external


SAT 9 (Scholastic Assessment Test), Middle School 7, Fundamental and Essential

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