Meaning of INTRINSIC in English


I. (ˈ)in.|trinz]ik, ən.ˈt-, -rin(t)s], ]ēk adjective

Etymology: Middle French intrinsèque inner, internal, from Late Latin intrinsecus, from Latin, adverb inwardly, inwards, from (assumed) Latin intrim (from — assumed — Old Latin interus inward, on the inside) + Latin -secus (from sequi to follow) — more at interior , sue

1. obsolete : private , secret


a. : belonging to the inmost constitution or essential nature of a thing : essential or inherent and not merely apparent, relative, or accidental

form was treated as something intrinsic , as the very essence of the thing in virtue of the metaphysical structure of the universe — John Dewey

recommend this book for its intrinsic interest — Daniel George

intrinsic merit

a wide gap between intrinsic feelings and the social expressions of them — H.J.Muller

— opposed to extrinsic

b. : originating or due to causes or factors within a body, organ, or part

intrinsic asthma

c. : being good in itself or irreducible : being desirable or desired for its own sake and without regard to anything else

when anyone says that values are merely matters of opinion or subjective liking, he is speaking only of intrinsic values — L.W.Beck

d. : real , actual

a fine big bird, he is … but there is no intrinsic beauty about him — Richard Jefferies

3. : originating and included wholly within an organ or part — used especially of certain muscles; opposed to extrinsic

• in·trin·si·cal·ly ]ə̇k(ə)lē, ]ēk-, -li adverb

• in·trin·si·cal·ness ]ə̇kəlnə̇s, ]ēk-\ noun -es

II. noun

( -s )

obsolete : an intrinsic quality

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.