Dictionary

1imperfect

adjective im·per·fect \(ˌ)im-ˈpər-fikt\

: having mistakes or problems : not perfect

grammar : of or relating to a verb tense used to express an incomplete action in the past or a state that continued for a period of time in the past

Full Definition of IMPERFECT

1
:  not perfect: as
a :  defective
b of a flower :  having stamens or pistils but not both
c :  lacking or not involving sexual reproduction <the imperfect stage of a fungus>
2
:  of, relating to, or constituting a verb tense used to designate a continuing state or an incomplete action especially in the past
3
:  not enforceable at law
im·per·fect·ly \-fik(t)-lē\ adverb
im·per·fect·ness \-fik(t)-nəs\ noun

Examples of IMPERFECT

  1. It's an imperfect solution to a difficult problem.
  2. He had an imperfect understanding of the task.
  3. In He was singing when I came in, was singing is in the imperfect tense.

Origin of IMPERFECT

alteration of Middle English imparfit, from Latin imperfectus, from in- + perfectus perfect
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

ablaut, allusion, anacoluthon, diacritic, gerund, idiom, infinitive, metaphor, semiotics, simile

2imperfect

noun

Definition of IMPERFECT

:  an imperfect tense; also :  the verb form expressing it

First Known Use of IMPERFECT

1871

Other Grammar and Linguistics Terms

ablaut, allusion, anacoluthon, diacritic, gerund, idiom, infinitive, metaphor, semiotics, simile
IMPERFECT Defined for Kids

imperfect

adjective im·per·fect \im-ˈpər-fikt\

Definition of IMPERFECT for Kids

:  having a fault of some kind :  not perfect
im·per·fect·ly adverb
July 01, 2015
precarious Hear it
not certain, secure, or steady
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