Definition of intercourse in US English:



  • 1Communication or dealings between individuals or groups.

    ‘everyday social intercourse’
    • ‘The Gaelic language ensures that even the most mundane of social intercourse became occasions of prayer.’
    • ‘The people, she indicted, were not handsome and had no idea of the charms of friendly society or of social intercourse.’
    • ‘Vanity is the cheese in the submarine sandwich of social intercourse.’
    • ‘The same is happening with the WTO's attempt to impose a systematic rule of law on international intercourse.’
    • ‘This obviously saves time and adds spontaneity to social intercourse.’
    • ‘His feeling is that the community needs the service as a place for social intercourse.’
    • ‘Eye contact is essential for effective social intercourse.’
    • ‘Travel to almost any city or resort in Europe and you'll see Irish, Scots and Welsh in friendly social intercourse with the locals.’
    • ‘But even this line of attack fails to separate cliché from the common forms of polite social intercourse.’
    • ‘What was expected of the government was friendship, social intercourse, and sympathy.’
    • ‘Hunting, like the army, was in any case an extension of normal political intercourse and business.’
    • ‘He was a perfectionist and he could be strict in social intercourse.’
    • ‘Ghanaian food is a currency for social intercourse: you walk into a person's home, therefore you are supposed to eat there.’
    • ‘Intellectually too, there seems to have been a surprising degree of intercourse between Europeans and the people of Lucknow.’
    • ‘Honestly, this constant social intercourse is just exhausting.’
    • ‘Ed is a lump whose idea of social intercourse is playing video games and practical jokes.’
    • ‘Such friendly intercourse was not the only way immigrants became native.’
    • ‘Their language cuts through the niceties of social intercourse to fundamentals.’
    • ‘Some of them talk indifferently about intercourse and interstate trade.’
    • ‘As Europe's economy and society were relatively integrated, intellectual intercourse was easier than it seemed.’
    dealings, relations, relationships, association, connections, contact, interchange, communication, intercommunication, communion, correspondence, negotiations, bargaining, transactions, proceedings
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    1. 1.1
      • ‘Timing intercourse to achieve or avoid pregnancy cannot be done with precision.’
      • ‘Thus, the length of foreplay may influence the duration of intercourse and vice versa.’
      • ‘Upon completion of our intercourse, I took a cigarette from the few I had left, and lit up.’
      • ‘She described the third incident as similar to the second but that the intercourse took place at night.’
      • ‘Regular intercourse two to three times a week should be advised, but basal body temperature charts are not helpful and should be avoided.’
      • ‘During intercourse, try the stop-and-start technique when the sensations become strong.’
      • ‘Toward the middle and end of adolescence, more young people engage in heterosexual intercourse.’
      • ‘He would not let her leave his flat for more than four hours and also forced the 30-year-old to have intercourse.’
      • ‘Testing and monitoring this process enables would-be parents to pinpoint the optimum moment for intercourse.’
      • ‘It is moral because it does not allow man to have intercourse with any woman he wishes, at any time he likes.’
      • ‘By having intercourse with a girl under the age of 16, the teenage boy has broken the law regardless of whether his partner was willing.’
      • ‘The result was painful intercourse for Esther and orgasm for neither spouse.’
      • ‘The two didn't have intercourse, she says, but they did everything else.’
      • ‘Patterson claimed the intercourse had been consensual and encouraged by her.’
      • ‘Heterosexual intercourse is the most common mode of transmission of HIV in poor countries.’
      • ‘Figure 1 may be useful for couples who wish to time their intercourse to occur during the woman's fertile window.’
      • ‘Don't give up on your relationship because intercourse has been temporarily eliminated.’
      • ‘First intercourse is rarely about love; it is often about peer pressure and the need to conform to it.’
      • ‘He claimed she had wanted sex and they had intercourse.’
      • ‘In terms of pregnancy, each additional act of unprotected intercourse increases risk.’
      sexual intercourse, sex, lovemaking, making love, sex act, act of love, sexual relations, intimate relations, intimacy, coupling, mating, going to bed with someone, sleeping with someone
      View synonyms


Late Middle English: from Old French entrecours ‘exchange, commerce’, from Latin intercursus, from intercurrere ‘intervene’, from inter- ‘between’ + currere ‘run’. The specifically sexual use arose in the late 18th century.