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impel

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verb im·pel \im-ˈpel\

Simple Definition of impel

  • : to cause (someone) to feel a strong need or desire to do something

Full Definition of impel

im·pelledim·pel·ling

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to urge or drive forward or on by or as if by the exertion of strong moral pressure :  force <felt impelled to correct the misconception>

  3. 2 :  to impart motion to :  propel

Examples of impel

  1. His interest in the American Civil War impelled him to make repeated visits to Gettysburg.

  2. She felt impelled to give a speech after the performance.



Origin of impel

Middle English impellen, from Latin impellere, from in- + pellere to drive — more at felt


First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of impel

move, actuate, drive, impel mean to set or keep in motion. move is very general and implies no more than the fact of changing position <moved the furniture>. actuate stresses transmission of power so as to work or set in motion <turbines actuated by waterpower>. drive implies imparting forward and continuous motion and often stresses the effect rather than the impetus <a ship driven aground by hurricane winds>. impel is usually figurative and suggests a great motivating impetus <a candidate impelled by ambition>.


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