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difficult

[dif-i-kuhlt, -kuh lt] /ˈdɪf ɪˌkʌlt, -kəlt/
adjective
1.
not easily or readily done; requiring much labor, skill, or planning to be performed successfully; hard:
a difficult job.
2.
hard to understand or solve:
a difficult problem.
3.
hard to deal with or get on with:
a difficult pupil.
4.
hard to please or satisfy:
a difficult employer.
5.
hard to persuade or induce; stubborn:
a difficult old man.
6.
disadvantageous; trying; hampering:
The operation was performed under the most difficult conditions.
7.
fraught with hardship, especially financial hardship:
We saw some difficult times during the depression years.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English, back formation from difficulty
Related forms
difficultly, adverb
nondifficult, adjective
quasi-difficult, adjective
quasi-difficultly, adverb
superdifficult, adjective
superdifficultly, adverb
undifficult, adjective
undifficultly, adverb
Synonyms
1. arduous. See hard. 2. intricate, perplexing, involved, knotty. 4. particular, finical, fussy. 5. obdurate, uncompromising.
Antonyms
1. easy. 2. simple.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for difficultly

difficult

/ˈdɪfɪkəlt/
adjective
1.
not easy to do; requiring effort a difficult job
2.
not easy to understand or solve; intricate a difficult problem
3.
hard to deal with; troublesome a difficult child
4.
not easily convinced, pleased, or satisfied a difficult audience
5.
full of hardships or trials difficult times ahead
Derived Forms
difficultly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: back formation from difficulty
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for difficultly

difficult

adj.

c.1400, apparently a back-formation from difficulty. French has difficile, Latin difficilis. Of persons, "hard to please," from 1580s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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