adjective im·por·tune \ˌim-pər-ˈtün, -ˈtyün; im-ˈpr-ˌ, -chən\

Definition of IMPORTUNE

im·por·tune·ly adverb


Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French importun, from Latin importunus, from in- + -portunus (as in opportunus fit) — more at opportune
First Known Use: 15th century



: to ask (someone) for something or to do something in a repeated or annoying way


Full Definition of IMPORTUNE

transitive verb
a :  to press or urge with troublesome persistence
b archaic :  to request or beg for urgently
:  annoy, trouble
intransitive verb
:  to beg, urge, or solicit persistently or troublesomely
im·por·tun·er noun

Examples of IMPORTUNE

  1. He stood on the street corner, importuning passersby for help.
  2. He importuned them to help.

First Known Use of IMPORTUNE


Synonym Discussion of IMPORTUNE

beg, entreat, beseech, implore, supplicate, adjure, importune mean to ask urgently. beg suggests earnestness or insistence in the asking <they begged for help>. entreat implies an effort to persuade or to overcome resistance <entreated me to join them>. beseech and implore imply a deeply felt anxiety <I beseech you to have mercy> <implored her not to leave>. supplicate suggests a posture of humility <with bowed heads they supplicated their Lord>. adjure implies advising as well as pleading <we were adjured to tell the truth>. importune suggests an annoying persistence in trying to break down resistance <importuning viewers for donations>.
IMPORTUNELY Defined for Kids


verb im·por·tune \ˌim-pər-ˈtün, -ˈtyün\

Definition of IMPORTUNE for Kids

:  to beg or urge in a repeated or annoying way <Salesmen importuned us to buy.>


Next Word in the Dictionary: importunityPrevious Word in the Dictionary: importunateAll Words Near: importune
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