Definition of incomprehensible in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌɪnkɒmprɪˈhɛnsɪb(ə)l/


Not able to be understood; not intelligible: a language which is incomprehensible to anyone outside the office
More example sentences
  • This story from the St Albans Observer is completely incomprehensible.
  • Confusing films may be in vogue, but confusing does NOT equal incomprehensible.
  • Spoken entirely in Latin and Aramaic, it is contrived, opaque and incomprehensible.
unintelligible, indecipherable;
incoherent, inarticulate
unintelligible, impossible to understand, impenetrable, unclear, too difficult/hard to understand, beyond comprehension, beyond one, beyond one's grasp, unfathomable, unaccountable, inexplicable, inscrutable, baffling, bewildering, mystifying, puzzling, confusing, perplexing, abstruse, obscure, opaque, esoteric, recondite, arcane, mysterious, Delphic;
complicated, complex, involved, intricate
informal over one's head, all Greek to someone
British informal double Dutch
archaic wildering



Pronunciation: /ˌɪnkɒmprɪhɛnsɪˈbɪlɪti/
Example sentences
  • It can't: it is crammed with lovers packed in tight, the details smashed flat, extraneous facts shorn away to save space, mangled and compressed to the point of incomprehensibility and all beyond counting or collating.
  • This article gives some idea of the incomprehensibility of such an event in Japan, where the discovery of a live bullet in someone's luggage at the airport is national news.
  • Marriage is the theme, in all its incomprehensibility, its difficulty and its infinite gentle understandings.


Pronunciation: /ɪnˌkɒmprɪˈhɛnsɪblnəs/
Example sentences
  • Today we toss around terms like ‘the end of the Cretaceous extinction’ with such ease that the full significance and near incomprehensibleness of the geologic time scale are lost in the sheer size of the fourth dimension.
  • He was a close friend of Laurel's, and was fairly decent in Em's books, despite the occasional stab of irritation from his incomprehensibleness.


Pronunciation: /ɪnˌkɒmprɪˈhɛnsɪbli/
Example sentences
  • I'm sure non-UK readers already think it's incomprehensibly ridiculous.
  • Why is it that the spread between those of us who are privileged and those of us who are not is so incomprehensibly large?
  • It's a year later, and the Tinsel Town premises has been expanded to include a bar, cafe and - incomprehensibly - a clothes shop.


Late Middle English (earlier than comprehensible): from Latin incomprehensibilis, from in- 'not' + comprehensibilis (see comprehensible).

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: in|com¦pre|hen¦sible

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