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I am looking for a word that means 'too powerful/grand to be explained in words.'

Sentence:

He argued that passion was something inherent, an entity too intrinsic to be []

Compartmentalized/explained may work? Not really what I'm going for though.

This is based off of Eliot's quote:

"It is obvious that we can no more explain a passion to a person who has never experienced it than we can explain light to the blind."

So if that helps to give context... :)

If an adequate word doesn't exist, I am thinking:

He argued that passion was something inherent, an entity too intrinsic to be cinched into words.

or

He argued that passion was something inherent, an entity too intrinsic to be cinched by words.

Which of these is more proper? Is there another phrase that would work better?

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    Inherent isn't the right idea, nor is intrinsic. The point is more like trying to explain "blue" to someone who's totally color blind. – Xanne Nov 25 '17 at 21:40
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    Please see this guidance from Stack Exchange Management about such questions. We are not a word-puzzle and crossword puzzle site; we're a site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English-language enthusiasts. – tchrist Dec 2 '17 at 1:39
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Have a look at the phrase "to beggar description."

Merriam Webster defines it as:

—used to talk about something that is very difficult to describe.

(Shakespeare too used it in Antony and Cleopatra)(2:2)

"For her own person, it beggared all description."(Source- The Free Dictionary)

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I wasn't able to find an exact word for your need. But close adjective is enigmatic.

Else, you could write as

He argued that passion was something inherent, an entity too intrinsic to be inked in any script or enunciated in lucid words to the masses.

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ineffable works for your opening sentence with no added context - via Collins English Dictionary, "1) too great or intense to be expressed in words ... 3) indescribable; indefinable."

but it looks like you want variants for what comes after the "too", whereas 'ineffable' is literally "a word that means 'too powerful/grand to be explained in words.'"

as far as helping to construct a chewy sentence with the context and structure you presented:

  • "too experiential to be encapsulated"? (i.e. something to be experienced rather than shoehorned into second-hand talk)
  • "too primordial to be verbalized"? (i.e. too original or fundamental to be characterized by mere speech)

edited to add:

  • "too visceral to be abstracted"? (i.e. too closely related to instinct to be translatable in intellectual dimensions)
  • I love the phrases! – Equinox Nov 25 '17 at 0:58
  • Please quote the relevant part from your link. Links break every so often, and answers should be as complete as possible in themselves. Also, please explain why experiential and primordial fit. – Andrew Leach Nov 25 '17 at 8:50

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