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[in-ten-shuh-nl] /ɪnˈtɛn ʃə nl/
done with intention or on purpose; intended:
an intentional insult.
of or relating to intention or purpose.
  1. pertaining to an appearance, phenomenon, or representation in the mind; phenomenal; representational.
  2. pertaining to the capacity of the mind to refer to an existent or nonexistent object.
  3. pointing beyond itself, as consciousness or a sign.
Origin of intentional
1520-30; intention + -al1
Related forms
intentionality, noun
intentionally, adverb
subintentional, adjective
subintentionally, adverb
1. designed, planned. See deliberate.
1. accidental. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for intentional
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The look when it came was one of those deliberate, intentional stares which made one feel so contemptible and insignificant.

    The Wonder J. D. Beresford
  • The forgetting was a little too intentional to be entirely complete.

    The Dominant Strain Anna Chapin Ray
  • intentional omission of one spouse to warn the other of an attempt by a third person on the life of the other spouse.

  • Not an intentional one, or one that could have been avoided, apparently.

    An American Suffragette Isaac N. Stevens
  • Want of confidence, and even of intentional deceit, might be attributed to him; and he would not be able to deny nor explain.

    The Man Bram Stoker
British Dictionary definitions for intentional


performed by or expressing intention; deliberate
of or relating to intention or purpose
  1. of or relating to the capacity of the mind to refer to different kinds of objects
  2. (of an object) existing only as the object of some mental attitude rather than in reality, as a unicorn in she hopes to meet a unicorn See also intensional
Derived Forms
intentionality, noun
intentionally, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for intentional

1520s, from Medieval Latin intentionalis, from intentionem (see intention). Intentional fallacy recorded from 1946. Related: Intentionality.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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