- not easily or readily done; requiring much labor, skill, or planning to be performed successfully; hard: a difficult job.
- hard to understand or solve: a difficult problem.
- hard to deal with or get on with: a difficult pupil.
- hard to please or satisfy: a difficult employer.
- hard to persuade or induce; stubborn: a difficult old man.
- disadvantageous; trying; hampering: The operation was performed under the most difficult conditions.
- fraught with hardship, especially financial hardship: We saw some difficult times during the depression years.
- not easy to do; requiring efforta difficult job
- not easy to understand or solve; intricatea difficult problem
- hard to deal with; troublesomea difficult child
- not easily convinced, pleased, or satisfieda difficult audience
- full of hardships or trialsdifficult times ahead
c.1400, apparently a back-formation from difficulty. French has difficile, Latin difficilis. Of persons, “hard to please,” from 1580s.