incapable of being expressed or described in words; inexpressible: ineffable joy.
not to be spoken because of its sacredness; unutterable: the ineffable name of the deity.
- in·ef·fa·bil·i·ty, in·ef·fa·ble·ness, noun
- in·ef·fa·bly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use ineffable in a sentence
There is no happy-go-lucky ending here, only the sense that an ineffable longing we have, to know and be known, is so precious and rare that most of us never find its fulfillment here on earth.
Over thousands of years, people have landed on only vague clues in pursuit of the keys to this ineffable magnetism.
More broadly, intuition captures that ineffable way a human brain generates insight.Geoffrey Hinton has a hunch about what’s next for AI | Siobhan Roberts | April 16, 2021 | MIT Technology Review
A lot of what mathematicians do when they approach a new problem is ineffable.At the Math Olympiad, Computers Prepare to Go for the Gold - Facts So Romantic | Kevin Hartnett | September 22, 2020 | Nautilus
At a high level, a lot of what mathematicians do when they approach a new problem is ineffable.At the Math Olympiad, Computers Prepare to Go for the Gold | Kevin Hartnett | September 21, 2020 | Quanta Magazine
It was something ineffable and harder to define: freedom of speech.Politicians Only Love Journalists When They're Dead | Luke O’Neil | January 8, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
And on that score, on that ineffable quality called charisma, Walker may face his biggest challenges.Scott Walker Is the Perfect Republican Candidate for 2016 (on Paper) | David Freedlander | November 20, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
Consider this latest ineffable outrage making the rounds on conservative websites.Blarney! The Faux Outrage Over Obama’s Belfast Comments | Michael Moynihan | June 21, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
Sometimes there's a thing in the air, an ineffable thing, that just makes it all work.Endless Summer: Meg Wolitzer Talks About “The Interestings” | Jane Ciabattari | April 16, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
They need God to feel immanent, nearly material like a Greek deity, while we need God to be thought ineffable and mysterious.
The young man's face suddenly changed, and assumed an expression of ineffable gentleness.The Border Rifles | Gustave Aimard
A strange spell came over the gazer, a spell of tender awe and ineffable peace.They Looked and Loved | Mrs. Alex McVeigh Miller
But the teacher does not go beyond this, and descant upon the opposite conditions, and promise joys ineffable and full of glory.Ancient Faiths And Modern | Thomas Inman
She chatted as usual in very good spirits, and just before he went she told him the report with a smile of ineffable scorn.It Is Never Too Late to Mend | Charles Reade
Balaustion—wild pomegranate flower—has in her something of the Greek; but she has also an ineffable touch of our modern time.
British Dictionary definitions for ineffable
too great or intense to be expressed in words; unutterable
too sacred to be uttered
- ineffability or ineffableness, noun
- ineffably, adverb
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