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inscrutable

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj inscrutable of an obscure nature "the new insurance policy is written without cryptic or mysterious terms","a deep dark secret","the inscrutable workings of Providence","in its mysterious past it encompasses all the dim origins of life"- Rachel Carson","rituals totally mystifying to visitors from other lands"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Inscrutable Unsearchable; incapable of being searched into and understood by inquiry or study; impossible or difficult to be explained or accounted for satisfactorily; obscure; incomprehensible; as, an inscrutable design or event. "'T is not in man
      To yield a reason for the will of Heaven
      Which is inscrutable ."
      "Waiving a question so inscrutable as this."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • inscrutable Incapable of being searched into or scrutinized; impenetrable to inquiry or investigation; incognizable: as, the ways of Providence are often inscrutable.
    • inscrutable Synonyms Impenetrable, undiscoverable, incomprehensible, unsearchable, mysterious.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Inscrutable in-skrōōt′a-bl that cannot be scrutinised or searched into and understood: inexplicable
    • ***

Etymology

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. inscrutabilis, : cf. F. inscrutable,. See In- not, and Scrutiny
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. inscrutabilisin, not, scrutāri, to search into.

Usage

In literature:

The ways of Providence are just and inscrutable.
"Allan and the Holy Flower" by H. Rider Haggard
When Hanson came home he wore the same inscrutable demeanour.
"Sister Carrie" by Theodore Dreiser
His look became inscrutable, was riveted on the rector.
"The Inside of the Cup, Complete" by Winston Churchill
Then Hungerford smiled at me inscrutably.
"Mrs. Falchion, Complete" by Gilbert Parker
They passed through the billiard-room, inscrutably mysterious, to the back of the house, to join their violated trunks.
"Victory" by Joseph Conrad
Her countenance was set and inscrutable, and her brooding eyes were fixed upon the King.
"The Historical Nights Entertainment, Second Series" by Rafael Sabatini
He met a face slightly and inscrutably smiling.
"The Leopard Woman" by Stewart Edward White
Heneage's inscrutable face was still upturned in their direction.
"The Avenger" by E. Phillips Oppenheim
His face was inscrutable, but she wondered how much he knew.
"Lister's Great Adventure" by Harold Bindloss
Hour by hour the mystery surrounding the Leithcourts became more inscrutable, more intensely absorbing.
"The Czar's Spy" by William Le Queux
Nature is almost as inscrutable as God.
"The Desert of Wheat" by Zane Grey
The searching eyes of the ambassador found his face blankly inscrutable.
"Elusive Isabel" by Jacques Futrelle
There she lay, her wispy form stretched in his arm-chair, her great dark eyes fixed, her mind at rest, sunk in some inscrutable dream.
"Vain Fortune" by George Moore
Hannah, who was young, but had a thick, colorless skin, nodded with an inscrutable expression.
"The Shoulders of Atlas" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
He maintained an air of distrustful inscrutability.
"Romance" by Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
But far otherwise was the allotment of a dark and inscrutable providence.
"Salem Witchcraft, Volumes I and II" by Charles Upham
In his imagination they reduced themselves to one, the attitude of inscrutable physical repugnance.
"The Helpmate" by May Sinclair
Out from the inscrutable white forest murder breathed like a pestilential air.
"Blazed Trail Stories" by Stewart Edward White
Eudemius turned his inscrutable eyes on him.
"Nicanor - Teller of Tales" by C. Bryson Taylor
The enigma grew more and more inscrutable.
"The Doctor of Pimlico" by William Le Queux
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In poetry:

How the wondrous mother formeth,
None have ever read aright;
Hid forever is her working,
And inscrutable her might.
"Punch Song (To be sung in the Northern Countries)" by Friedrich von Schiller
Oh, I am strange, inscrutable, and proud;
You cannot prove me though you try and try.
I'll keep your love alive and wondering
Until you die.
"Perversity" by Aline Murray Kilmer
For she knows me! My heart, clear as a crystal beam
To her alone, ceases to be inscrutable
To her alone, and she alone knows to dispel
My grief, cooling my brow with her tears' gentle stream.
"Mon Reve Familier" by Paul Verlaine
The sense of your bidding is unclear:
to pray, to curse, is it, to fight
you bid me, inscrutable genius?
The spring slackens, niggard, meager,
and Benozzo Gozzoli's courier
dozes in the drowsy thickets.
"The Sense Of Your Bidding" by Mikhail Alekseevich Kuzmin
Nothing is heard . . . Hark! — a bird
Calls from a green-gloomed, dripping cover!
Surely wrath rode not in the blast,
But some inscrutable Lover passed,
Aflame with the lust of the Dew for the Dust,
Out of the Vast into the Vast.
"Prarie Storm Rune" by John Gneisenau Neihardt
So I answered: "Gentle Bandar, and inscrutable Decree
Makes thee a gleesome fleasome Thou, and me a wretched Me.
Go! Depart in peace, my brother, to thy home amid the pine;
Yet forget not once a mortal wished to change his lot for thine."
"Divided Destinies" by Rudyard Kipling

In news:

The DC area's abbreviated restaurant names, in order of inscrutability.
Every year around May, strangers send inscrutable gifts to Marianne Lettieri.
A Video That Captures the Horror and the Inscrutability of Syria.
Who's more inscrutable, Bob Dylan or Ravi Batra.
The World's Most Inscrutable Company.
Decoding those inscrutable fees on your phone bill.
Announcing 'The Great Dysmorphia' Ambiguous, Inscrutable, Open-Ended Contest.
You know, the skinny kid with the hurricane hair and the inscrutable smirk who blasted business as usual in the teeth.
If the artist's ways are inscrutable, why should getting to his house be any easier.
While many of Robert Lostutter's paintings are tense and inscrutable, the artist himself seems anything but.
From Japan, land of inscrutable fads, comes a real head-turner.
Greater Washington, caught between mandating inscrutable CAPTCHA phrases in its comment or succumbing to spam, has found a clever way out.
Among the inscrutable terms invented to parse the stylistic subtleties of rock music, "bedroom pop" stands out as an elegantly descriptive coinage.
While pretending to revere it as an important document that is just too inscrutable to limit government, liberals let slip what they really think about the Constitution.
We seek to "enlighten" what is before us and to overcome the inscrutable and the eerie in order to make the world a better, more manageable place.
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In science:

Since “the output of complex numerical models is as inscrutable as nature herself ” (Emanuel 1991), it seems advisable to first develop reliable and accurate supernova models with a minimum of questionable assumptions and then to move on step by step to expanding them towards larger complexity and more completeness.
Explosion Mechanisms of Massive Stars
Finally, the poor-quality photographic ph otometry we are limited to in this field renders inscrutable th e typical CMD features such as the blue edge of the Galactic disk MSTO and the Sgr upper main sequence.
Kinematics and Chemistry of Stars Along the Sagittarius Trailing Tidal Tail and Constraints on the Milky Way Mass Distribution
While only a “smoking gun” is missing for the case that the Galactic component of the cosmic-ray spectrum originates in supernova remnants, the origin of the extragalactic component remains as inscrutable as ever.
IceCube: Neutrinos Associated with Cosmic Rays
Unfortunately, there are many other examples of failed major projects that have similar root causes: inscrutable, ill-designed or not exhaustively tested software .
Improving the Technical Aspects of Software Testing in Enterprises
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