noun prob·lem \ˈprä-bləm, -bəm, -ˌblem\

: something that is difficult to deal with : something that is a source of trouble, worry, etc.

: difficulty in understanding something

: a feeling of not liking or wanting to do something

Full Definition of PROBLEM

a :  a question raised for inquiry, consideration, or solution
b :  a proposition in mathematics or physics stating something to be done
a :  an intricate unsettled question
b :  a source of perplexity, distress, or vexation
c :  difficulty in understanding or accepting <I have a problem with your saying that>

Origin of PROBLEM

Middle English probleme, from Latin problema, from Greek problēma, literally, obstacle, from proballein to throw forward, from pro- forward + ballein to throw — more at pro-, devil
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of PROBLEM

mystery, problem, enigma, riddle, puzzle mean something which baffles or perplexes. mystery applies to what cannot be fully understood by reason or less strictly to whatever resists or defies explanation <the mystery of the stone monoliths>. problem applies to a question or difficulty calling for a solution or causing concern <problems created by high technology>. enigma applies to utterance or behavior that is very difficult to interpret <his suicide remains an enigma>. riddle suggests an enigma or problem involving paradox or apparent contradiction <the riddle of the reclusive pop star>. puzzle applies to an enigma or problem that challenges ingenuity for its solution <the thief's motives were a puzzle for the police>.



: difficult to deal with

Full Definition of PROBLEM

:  dealing with a problem of conduct or social relationship <a problem play>
:  difficult to deal with <a problem child>

First Known Use of PROBLEM

PROBLEM Defined for Kids


noun prob·lem \ˈprä-bləm\

Definition of PROBLEM for Kids

:  something to be worked out or solved <a problem in arithmetic>
:  a person or thing that is hard to understand or deal with <He's not the problem. His parents are.> <Her behavior is a big problem.>
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