• WordNet 3.6
    • n perplexity trouble or confusion resulting from complexity
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Perplexity The quality or state of being perplexed or puzzled; complication; intricacy; entanglement; distraction of mind through doubt or difficulty; embarrassment; bewilderment; doubt. "By their own perplexities involved,
      They ravel more."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n perplexity An intricate or involved state or condition; the character of being intricate, complicated, or involved.
    • n perplexity The state of being perplexed; distraction of mind through doubt or difficulty; embarrassment; bewilderment.
    • n perplexity A perplexing circumstance, state of things, or conjuncture of affairs; whatever is a source of distraction or puzzlement of mind.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Perplexity state of being perplexed: confusion of mind arising from doubt, &c.: intricacy: embarrassment: doubt
    • ***


  • Sidney J. Harris
    “Middle Age is that perplexing time of life when we hear two voices calling us, one saying, Why not? and the other, Why bother?”
  • John Milton
    “Fear of change perplexes monarchs.”
  • Gilbert K. Chesterton
    “The perplexity of life arises from there being too many interesting things in it for us to be interested properly in any of them.”
  • Sir John Vanbrugh
    Sir John Vanbrugh
    “The want of a thing is perplexing enough, but the possession of it, is intolerable.”
  • Thomas Kempis
    “Scruples, temptations, and fears, and cutting perplexities of the heart, are often the lot of the most excellent persons.”
  • Kahlil Gibran
    “Perplexity is the beginning of knowledge.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. perplexitas,: cf. F. perplexité,
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L. perplexus, entangled—per, completely, plexus, involved, pa.p. of plectĕre.


In literature:

For awhile he left his perplexities behind, in the pleasure of rapid motion and fresh air.
"The Bread-winners" by John Hay
He stood transfixed with wonder and perplexity; wonder at her beauty; perplexity as to who she was.
"The Summons" by A.E.W. Mason
Desmond was perplexed and still more ill at ease.
"In Clive's Command" by Herbert Strang
And it will perplex the reader to say what a "square penny" is.
"Amusements in Mathematics" by Henry Ernest Dudeney
Walking straight up to the table, he stood by it, his face wearing a blank, perplexed look.
"Elster's Folly" by Mrs. Henry Wood
She was perplexed, uneasy.
"The Black Box" by E. Phillips Oppenheim
The young girl's mind became perplexed.
"The Mormon Prophet" by Lily Dougall
Day by day more of life was revealed to her, and added to her great perplexity.
"The Guinea Stamp" by Annie S. Swan
How he was to get up there would have perplexed an observer.
"Ben Blair" by Will Lillibridge
Robert looked at her perplexed.
"The Portion of Labor" by Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

In poetry:

And this perplexity of strife
Not all estranged leaves our heart;
England is ours yet, and her life
Has yet in ours the purest part.
"The Men Who Loved The Cause That Never Dies" by John Freeman
Now marriage shall no more perplex;
For ever he'll discard the sex;
Like a wreck'd sailor got on shore,
Will venture out to sea no more.
"The Wager" by William Hutton
Let me forget the world that is
The changing image of my thought,
Nor see in thicket and hedge and meadow
Myself, a grave perplexed shadow;
"From Wear To Thames" by John Freeman
As in strange lands a traveller walking slow,
In doubt and great perplexity,
A little before moon-rise hears the low
Moan of an unknown sea;
"The Palace of Art" by Alfred Lord Tennyson
Ye busy Race! ye factious Train!
That haunt ambition's guilty shrine;
No more perplex the world in vain,
But offer here your vows with mine.
"Ode to Indolence" by William Shenstone
They showed me how, by three-fold scoff,
When cares of life perplex us,
To smoke, or sleep, or fiddle them off,
And scorn the ills that vex us.
"The Three Gipsies" by Nikolaus Lenau

In news:

The trend dubbed "bring your own device," or BYOD, is emerging as a perplexing problem in the workplace, including banks.
The Perplexity of Youths in a Group.
Perplexing 'Cloud Atlas' trailer, by Wachowskis with Hanks, Berry.
Perplexing thinking by Roberts.
Williams, Santos missing persons cases ' perplexing and odd'.
Monrovia Council member's statements perplexing .
Sasser Still Won't Let Go, A Habit Perplexing to Mets.
Prop 37's labeling requirements are especially perplexing.
Al-Khalili's (Quantum: A Guide for the Perplexed) latest dives into "deep questions about the nature of time and space and the properties of the Universe"—and shows just how tantalizing these problems can be.
"I was perplexed and surprised," at the accusations made against me at the hearing, Ware said.
Pricey park potty has patrons perplexed.
The incidence of Lyme disease is increasing, parents are panicked about potentially dangerous consequences -- and the medical community is intensifying its efforts to understand this perplexing illness.
The Perplexing Protocol of Party Wine.
All of my gift-giving has been made less perplexing by that wondrous thing called a check.
I am both inspired and perplexed by this simple quote.

In science:

In Bramson, M. and Durrett, R., editors, Perplexing Probability Problems: Papers in Honor of Harry Kesten, pages 69–90, Boston.
Coupling and Bernoullicity in random-cluster and Potts models
At first this may seem perplexing because in sections II and III we showed that the physical states in both theories satisfy the (positive frequency) Klein-Gordon equation.
Robustness of key features of loop quantum cosmology
In Perplexing problems in probability, volume 44 of Progr.
The growth exponent for planar loop-erased random walk
This is somewhat perplexing, as the AGN black hole masses include an overall scaling factor that brings the AGN MBH - σ⋆ relationship into agreement with that of quiescent galaxies.
The Black Hole Mass-Bulge Luminosity Relationship for Active Galactic Nuclei from Reverberation Mapping and Hubble Space Telescope Imaging
But as the years stretched on with no eruption, hope faded, to be replaced by frustration and perplexity.
The Nova Shell and Evolution of the Recurrent Nova T Pyxidis