verb (used with object)

to cut or divide by passing through or across: The highway intersects the town.

verb (used without object)

to cross, as lines or wires.
Geometry. to have one or more points in common: intersecting lines.

Origin of intersect

1605–15; < Latin intersectus, past participle of intersecāre “to cut through, sever”; see inter-, -sect
Related formsnon·in·ter·sect·ing, adjectiveself-in·ter·sect·ing, adjectiveun·in·ter·sect·ed, adjectiveun·in·ter·sect·ing, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for intersected

Contemporary Examples of intersected

Historical Examples of intersected

  • The moor is intersected with paths and the moon was at the full.

  • Stones had been removed and built into low walls that intersected the fields.

    In Apple-Blossom Time

    Clara Louise Burnham

  • We were on some high ground which was intersected by rocky ravines and sandhills.


    John French, Viscount of Ypres

  • The cultivated ground was intersected by a considerable stream of water.

    Wood Rangers

    Mayne Reid

  • He then claimed the trees, as they were intersected every way by his property.

British Dictionary definitions for intersected



to divide, cut, or mark off by passing through or across
(esp of roads) to cross (each other)
maths (often foll by with) to have one or more points in common (with another configuration)

Word Origin for intersect

C17: from Latin intersecāre to divide, from inter- + secāre to cut
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 intersected



1610s, back-formation from intersection, or else from Latin intersectus, past participle of intersecare "intersect, cut asunder," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + secare "to cut" (see section (n.)). Related: Intersected; intersecting.



1650s, from Latin intersectum (see intersect (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper