Quantcast
Merriam-Webster Logo
  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
  • Scrabble
  • Spanish Central
  • Learner's Dictionary

imminent

play
adjective im·mi·nent \ˈi-mə-nənt\

Simple Definition of imminent

  • : happening very soon

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of imminent

  1. :  ready to take place; especially :  hanging threateningly over one's head <was in imminent danger of being run over>

imminently

adverb

Examples of imminent in a sentence

  1. The FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and the local authorities were momentarily stunned, and began frantically trying to prepare for what they feared were further imminent attacks. —Richard A. Clarke, Atlantic, January/February 2005

  2. The compression squashes the bullet slightly, enabling about a half-dozen spiral grooves cut along the barrel's inner wall to grab the bullet and make it spin. That spin stabilizes the bullet's imminent flight. —Peter Weiss, Science News, 11 Jan. 2003

  3. Plaints about the imminent demise of the language are made in every century. But there is usually nothing inherently wrong with most changes the purists deplore. —Steven Pinker, New York Times, 24 Dec. 1999

  4. We are awaiting their imminent arrival.

  5. These patients are facing imminent death.



Origin and Etymology of imminent

Latin imminent-, imminens, present participle of imminēre to project, threaten, from in- + -minēre (akin to Latin mont-, mons mountain) — more at mount


First Known Use: 1528


IMMINENT Defined for Kids

imminent

play
adjective im·mi·nent \ˈi-mə-nənt\

Definition of imminent for Students

  1. :  being about to happen <imminent danger>





Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up imminent? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

of striking ability or excellence

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

two-chairs-on-a-pier-by-the-ocean-in-summer

Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?

estival vernal brumal hiemal
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ