imagination

noun
imag·​i·​na·​tion | \ i-ˌma-jə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce imagination (audio) \

Definition of imagination

1 : the act or power of forming a mental image of something not present to the senses or never before wholly perceived in reality
2a : creative ability
b : ability to confront and deal with a problem : resourcefulness use your imagination and get us out of here
c : the thinking or active mind : interest stories that fired the imagination
3a : a creation of the mind especially : an idealized or poetic creation
b : fanciful or empty assumption

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Examples of imagination in a Sentence

You can find a solution if you use a little imagination. The author does not tell us what happens to the characters. We have to use our imagination. He's a competent writer, but he lacks imagination. Is it just my imagination, or is it getting warm in here?
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Great Blue Hole first entered much of the public's imagination in 1971, when it was featured on an episode of The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "What Is the Great Blue Hole?," 19 Feb. 2019 While costume remains in the past, the set exists in the present (though equally adaptable in the imagination). Demetrios Matheou, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Lehman Trilogy': Theater Review," 13 July 2018 In the beginning, almost 20 years ago, the Big Bay Boom was a tiny spark in Sandy Purdon’s imagination. John Wilkens, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Big Bay Boom founder has a soft spot for blowing things up — and for the smiles that follow," 4 July 2018 Could the Jane the Virgin world simply be Jane’s imagination or a plot line for her novel? Maria Tallarico, Glamour, "9 Jane the Virgin Fan Theories That Will Keep You Up at Night," 11 Jan. 2019 That clash between imagination and reality is what ultimately lures Parsons into the occult. Thomas Harlander, Los Angeles Magazine, "A Forgotten Pasadena Rocket Scientist and Occultist Inspired a New TV Show," 13 June 2018 The only limit to achieving these paradigm shifts is our own imagination. Houston Chronicle, "What does future hold for the offshore sector?," 4 May 2018 In our opinion, the ideal white elephant gift is usually one that is funny but useless, useful but bizarre, or a flat out mix of both, which can take a lot of imagination to successfully pull off. SELF, "31 Funny, Totally Office-Appropriate White Elephant Gifts $20 and Under," 8 Nov. 2018 With just the right dose of imagination, a classic room can be transformed into something magical. Taylor Mead, House Beautiful, "This Narnia-Inspired Bedroom Will Give You Major Room Envy," 30 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'imagination.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of imagination

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for imagination

Middle English ymaginacioun, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French ymaginacion, borrowed from Latin imāginātiōn-, imāginātiō, from imāginārī "to imagine" + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action

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More Definitions for imagination

imagination

noun

English Language Learners Definition of imagination

: the ability to imagine things that are not real : the ability to form a picture in your mind of something that you have not seen or experienced
: the ability to think of new things
: something that only exists or happens in your mind

imagination

noun
imag·​i·​na·​tion | \ i-ˌma-jə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce imagination (audio) \

Kids Definition of imagination

1 : the act, process, or power of forming a mental picture of something not present and especially of something a person has not known or experienced Her imagination kept her entertained on the long ride.
2 : creative ability Her story shows great imagination.
3 : a creation of the mind Is it just my imagination or are we moving?

imagination

noun
imag·​i·​na·​tion | \ im-ˌaj-ə-ˈnā-shən How to pronounce imagination (audio) \

Medical Definition of imagination

: an act or process of forming a conscious idea or mental image of something never before wholly perceived in reality by the one forming the images (as through a synthesis of remembered elements of previous sensory experiences or ideas as modified by unconscious defense mechanisms) also : the ability or gift of forming such conscious ideas or mental images especially for the purposes of artistic or intellectual creation

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Comments on imagination

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of or relating to a parable or parabola

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