Share this entry

Share this page


Syllabification: in·ter·course
Pronunciation: /ˈin(t)ərˌkôrs

Definition of intercourse in English:


1Communication or dealings between individuals or groups: everyday social intercourse
More example sentences
  • His feeling is that the community needs the service as a place for social intercourse.
  • Travel to almost any city or resort in Europe and you'll see Irish, Scots and Welsh in friendly social intercourse with the locals.
  • Honestly, this constant social intercourse is just exhausting.
interchange, communication, communion, correspondence;
negotiations, bargaining, transactions;
trade, traffic, commerce
informal doings, truck
1.1 short for sexual intercourse.
Example sentences
  • During intercourse, try the stop-and-start technique when the sensations become strong.
  • Heterosexual intercourse is the most common mode of transmission of HIV in poor countries.
  • Patterson claimed the intercourse had been consensual and encouraged by her.
informal nookie, whoopee
technical coitus, coition
formal fornication


late Middle English (denoting communication or dealings): from Old French entrecours 'exchange, commerce', from Latin intercursus, from intercurrere 'intervene', from inter- 'between' + currere 'run'. The specifically sexual use arose in the late 18th century.

Definition of intercourse in:

Share this entry

Share this page


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day jaunt
Pronunciation: dʒɔːnt
a short excursion or journey made for pleasure