Definition of mysterious in English:



  • 1Difficult or impossible to understand, explain, or identify.

    ‘his colleague had vanished in mysterious circumstances’
    ‘a mysterious benefactor provided the money’
    • ‘The stunning cover of this mysterious novel provides a clue to its structure.’
    • ‘There is certainly nothing mysterious about the company's growing association with golf.’
    • ‘A young artist has created a mysterious object in a box for a corporate assignment.’
    • ‘Kenny has a mysterious benefactor who paid for his drama school training.’
    • ‘Should a mysterious caller come on the phone and tell you he has planted a bomb in the building where you work, what would you do?’
    • ‘He said the police had been informed and were now investigating the mysterious disappearance.’
    • ‘The next day, everyone could talk of nothing but the mysterious woman at the ball.’
    • ‘He's the uncle of the kid who got killed in Germany under mysterious circumstances by a far right group.’
    • ‘In mysterious circumstances the gold disappeared leaving only its legend, and a map, behind.’
    • ‘Two new forensic tests may have brought the mysterious case to a close.’
    • ‘With so much of a mysterious haze surrounding the sport, I clearly needed more information.’
    • ‘There have also been a series of mysterious disappearances in the College.’
    • ‘It'll explain all about this mysterious new boy that none of the girls knew about.’
    • ‘Death can only be thought of as mysterious when we try to understand it by imagining it.’
    • ‘He was allowed to escape to the USA where he died in mysterious circumstances.’
    • ‘He massages most parts of me and I'm refreshed, and contemplate mysterious scars on his body.’
    • ‘Come to think of it, I did hear a mysterious rustle coming from the kitchen.’
    • ‘When the mysterious visitor walks through the door, he hits him in the head with the plank of wood.’
    • ‘The circumstances are, of course, more mysterious than first impressions imply.’
    • ‘The plays are in French, which will make the plot all the more mysterious for some people.’
    puzzling, strange, peculiar, curious, funny, queer, odd, weird, bizarre, mystifying, inexplicable, baffling, perplexing, bewildering, confusing, uncanny, dark, impenetrable, incomprehensible, unexplainable, unfathomable, delphic, sibylline, unaccountable, insoluble, obscure
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    1. 1.1 (of a location) having an atmosphere of strangeness or secrecy.
      ‘a dark, mysterious, windowless building’
      • ‘She spends the weekend in a mysterious castle.’
      • ‘His destination was the ruins of Quirigua, one of the mysterious ancient sites that had been described by travellers, but about which little was yet known.’
    2. 1.2 (of a person) deliberately enigmatic.
      ‘she was mysterious about herself but said plenty about her husband’
      • ‘Nitrus looked down at his charge, following Zinc back out of the mysterious room into the main complex.’
      • ‘That mysterious room always locked up half behind the school on the left is still there.’
      • ‘You could simply read all this as a hymn to growing up in a magical, deeply mysterious city.’
      • ‘The roof has the same sort of mysterious but simple majesty of a big barn with six wooden trusses and exposed rafters.’
      • ‘This will all be done from a floating fortress, a mysterious place of unrivaled dark glory.’
      enigmatic, inscrutable, secretive, sphinx-like, cloak-and-dagger, reticent, non-committal, discreet, evasive, furtive, surreptitious, covert
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Late 16th century: from French mystérieux, from mystère ‘mystery’.