Contraption definition

kən-trăpshən
Frequency:
A mechanical device; a gadget.
noun
11
3
A device or machine regarded as strange, incomprehensible, makeshift, etc.; contrivance or gadget.
noun
10
2
noun
5
1
The definition of a contraption is a strange machine, appliance or device used to do something.

A strange little bike that you built yourself to get you from place to place that looks as if it is going to fall apart at any minute is an example of a contraption.

noun
1
2
(figuratively, derogatory or ironic) Any object.
noun
0
4
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
contraption
Plural:
contraptions

Origin of contraption

  • Perhaps mock-Latinate blend of contrive trap

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Possibly a Western US English dialectical word. Unknown origin. Perhaps from contrive + trap + -tion. Chambers suggests contrivance + adaption. Neither Chambers nor Concise Oxford suggests a US origin. cf cantrip (Scots dialect), a wilful piece of trickery.

    From Wiktionary