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enigmatic

[en-ig-mat-ik, ee-nig-] /ˌɛn ɪgˈmæt ɪk, ˌi nɪg-/
adjective
1.
resembling an enigma, or a puzzling occurrence, situation, statement, person, etc.; perplexing; mysterious: She has a perpetually enigmatic expression on her face.
This is the most enigmatic book I have ever read!
Also, enigmatical.
Origin of enigmatic
1620-1630
1620-30; < Late Latin aenigmaticus < Greek ainigmatikós, equivalent to ainigmat- (stem of aínigma) enigma + -ikos -ic
Related forms
enigmatically, adverb
nonenigmatic, adjective
nonenigmatical, adjective
nonenigmatically, adverb
unenigmatic, adjective
unenigmatical, adjective
unenigmatically, adverb
Synonyms
puzzling, baffling, cryptic.
Synonym Study
See ambiguous.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for enigmatic
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There was an enigmatic smile bending the scarlet lips as she answered.

    Within the Law Marvin Dana
  • All trace of stress and strain had left it, replaced by an enigmatic calm.

    The Bacillus of Beauty Harriet Stark
  • There was the enigmatic dimness, though not dense darkness, of the night.

    A Spirit in Prison Robert Hichens
  • There was an enigmatic smile on his lips whilst he awaited Juve's reply.

    A Nest of Spies Pierre Souvestre
  • Had he been happily inspired to speak so to him of the girl he loved, the enigmatic Wilhelmine?

    A Nest of Spies Pierre Souvestre
Word Origin and History for enigmatic
adj.

1640s, from Late Latin aenigmaticus, from aenigmat-, stem of aenigma (see enigma). Enigmatical in the same sense is from 1570s. Related: Enigmatically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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