A child struggles with a difficult math problem.
- An example of difficult is a very complicated calculus problem.
- An example of difficult is a person who is critical all the time and never pleased.
- hard to do, make, manage, understand, etc.; requiring extra effort, skill, or thought
- having or characterized by difficulties or troubles: stocks holding up despite a difficult economy
- hard to satisfy, persuade, please, etc.
Origin of difficultME, back-formation from difficulty
- Requiring considerable effort or skill; not easy to do or accomplish: “To entertain is far more difficult than to enlighten” ( Anthony Burgess )
- Not easy to endure; full of hardship or trouble; trying: fell upon difficult times.
- Not easy to comprehend, solve, or explain: a difficult puzzle.
- Not easy to please, satisfy, or manage: a difficult child.
- Not easy to persuade or convince; stubborn.
Origin of difficultMiddle English back-formation from difficulte difficulty ; see difficulty .
(comparative more difficult, superlative most difficult)
Difficult implies that considerable mental effort or physical skill is required, or that obstacles are to be overcome which call for sagacity and skill in the doer; as, a difficult task. Thus, "hard" is not always synonymous with difficult: Other examples include a difficult operation in surgery and a difficult passage by an author (that is, a passage which is hard to understand).
(third-person singular simple present difficults, present participle difficulting, simple past and past participle difficulted)