- not easily controlled or directed; not docile or manageable; stubborn; obstinate: an intractable disposition.
- (of things) hard to shape or work with: an intractable metal.
- hard to treat, relieve, or cure: the intractable pain in his leg.
- an intractable person.
Origin of intractable
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
1. perverse, headstrong, dogged, obdurate, stony, willful, froward. 1, 2. fractious, refractory, unbending, inflexible, adamant, unyielding. See unruly.
1. amiable. 1, 2. amenable, flexible.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for intractability
The press gets involved, the Twittersphere goes wild, and all the seeds of intractability are sown.What Hockey Players Can Teach our Toothless Politicians
April 29, 2014
But for spring 2012, the designer's intractability paid off.Milan’s Day-Glo Exuberance
September 26, 2011
One reason for the current intractability is that U.S. businesses over-reacted to the initial downturn.How to Really Fix the Economy
August 19, 2010
We can admit the intractability of depravation, and still strive for dignity.Obama's Nobel Prize Acceptance Speech
December 10, 2009
The intractability of the Lady Jezebel was beyond all bounds.The Night Riders
Heaven supply me with fortitude to contest her wild opinions, and intractability!A Laodicean
Wasn't she the author of a pamphlet on the intractability of servants?Married
If Jill was to be wooed from her mood of intractability, Derek was the only man to do it.The Little Warrior
P. G. Wodehouse
Or weeks or months or years according to the degree of our intractability.When Ghost Meets Ghost
William Frend De Morgan
- difficult to influence or directan intractable disposition
- (of a problem, illness, etc) difficult to solve, alleviate, or cure
- difficult to shape or mould, esp with the hands
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for intractability
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- Difficult to manage or govern; stubborn.
- Difficult to alleviate, remedy, or cure.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.