The literal meaning for the Arabic word nikah depends on how it is used in a sentence:
1. If it says nikah between a female and a male, it refers to a marriage contract.
2. If it says man did nikah with his wife, (nakaha), it means sexual intercourse.
The technical meaning of nikah:
An Islamic contract between a female and a male, for the purpose of being together, intimacy, and forming a family. Of course, along with all the other conditions.