Meaning of COMPLEX in English

COMPLEX

I. com ‧ plex 1 S3 W2 AC /ˈkɒmpleks $ ˌkɑːmˈpleks◂/ BrE AmE adjective

[ Word Family: noun : ↑ complexity ; adjective : ↑ complex ]

[ Date: 1600-1700 ; Language: Latin ; Origin: complexus , past participle of complecti 'to include (many different things)' , from com- ( ⇨ COM- ) + plectere ( , ↑ plexus ) ]

1 . consisting of many different parts and often difficult to understand SYN complicated OPP simple :

a complex system of highways

Photosynthesis is a highly complex process.

Peter seemed to have an instant understanding of the most complex issues.

It was a very complex relationship between two complex people.

2 . technical a complex word or sentence contains a main part and one or more other parts ⇨ compound

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THESAURUS

▪ complicated consisting of a lot of different parts or details and therefore difficult to understand:

The rules of the game seemed very complicated.

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I didn’t realize programming the VCR would be so complicated.

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The brain is like a very powerful, very complicated computer.

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a complicated issue

▪ complex a complex process, relationship etc is difficult to understand because it has a lot of parts that are all connected in different ways:

The chemical processes involved are extremely complex.

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the complex relationship between government and the media

▪ elaborate having a lot of parts or details and very carefully planned, but often more complicated than is necessary:

Mike had worked out an elaborate system for categorizing his collection of DVDs.

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The plan to kidnap her had become even more elaborate.

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Sociologists have been coming up with increasingly elaborate theories to explain unsafe sexual practices.

▪ involved very long and complicated – use this especially about something that you think should be made simpler:

The system for choosing candidates is very involved, and I won’t go into it here.

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Adopting a child can be a long involved process.

▪ convoluted too complicated and difficult to understand – used especially about someone’s language or arguments, or about a system:

convoluted sentences

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Procedures for government funding have become more convoluted.

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James’s books are full of long paragraphs and convoluted sentences, which many people do not find appealing.

▪ intricate having a lot of small parts or details – used especially about something that is cleverly designed or made:

Lasers are used to cut intricate designs in the metal.

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The farmers use an intricate system of drainage canals.

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the intricate workings of a watch

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intricate patterns of coloured marble

II. com ‧ plex 2 AC /ˈkɒmpleks $ ˈkɑːm-/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

1 . a group of buildings, or a large building with many parts, used for a particular purpose:

The town has one of the best leisure complexes in the country.

a three-story apartment complex

2 . a complex of something formal a large number of things which are closely related:

China was a complex of different societies.

3 . an emotional problem in which someone is unnecessarily anxious about something or thinks too much about something:

I used to have a complex about my looks.

⇨ ↑ inferiority complex , ↑ Oedipus complex , ↑ persecution complex

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COLLOCATIONS

■ types of complex

▪ a leisure complex (=where you can play sports or relax)

The new leisure complex includes a swimming pool, a sauna and a gym.

▪ a shopping complex

Some old buildings were pulled down to make space for a new shopping complex.

▪ a sports complex

The sports complex also has six tennis courts.

▪ an entertainment complex (=with cinemas, restaurants and other places to go)

There are plans for an entertainment complex with cinemas and a bowling alley.

▪ a holiday complex (=one where people go for holidays)

The lively holiday complex has plenty of nightclubs, bars, and restaurants.

▪ a housing/residential complex (=for people to live in)

Architects designed the residential complexes near the beach.

▪ a retail/commercial complex (=for shops, businesses, or industries)

a ten-screen movie theater and retail complex

▪ an office/museum/hospital etc complex

a 120-acre office complex near Las Vegas

▪ an apartment complex American English

a luxury apartment complex on Fulton Street

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THESAURUS

▪ building a structure such as a house, church, or factory, that has a roof and walls:

The college needs money to pay for new buildings.

▪ property formal a building or piece of land, or both together - used especially when talking about buying and selling buildings or land:

The next property they looked at was too small.

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The company received permission to build six residential properties on the land.

▪ premises formal the buildings and land that a shop, restaurant, company etc uses:

You are not allowed to drink alcohol on the premises.

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The bread is baked on the premises.

▪ complex a group of buildings, or a large building with many parts, used for a particular purpose:

The town has one of the best leisure complexes in the country.

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a luxury apartment complex

▪ development a group of new buildings that have all been planned and built together on the same piece of land:

a new housing development

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a huge industrial development

▪ block especially British English a large tall building that contains apartments or offices, or is part of a school, university, or hospital:

an office block

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a block of flats

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a tower block (=a very tall building - often used disapprovingly)

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My next lecture is in the science block.

▪ facility especially American English a place or building used for a particular activity or industry:

a research facility on campus

▪ edifice formal a large building, especially one that is tall and impressive - a very formal use:

Their head office was an imposing edifice.

▪ structure formal something that has been made to stand upright - used especially when talking about buildings:

The stone arch is one of the town’s oldest existing structures.

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an immense barn-like structure

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Mogul calls this building, designed by Donald and John Parkinson in 1928, ‘the most important structure in Los Angeles of the 20th century.’

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.