imag·​i·​na·​tive | \ i-ˈmaj-nə-tiv How to pronounce imaginative (audio) ; -ˈma-jə-ˌnā-, -nə-\

Definition of imaginative

1a : of, relating to, or characterized by imagination
b : devoid of truth : false
2 : given to imagining : having a lively imagination
3 : of or relating to images especially : showing a command of imagery

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from imaginative

imaginatively adverb
imaginativeness noun

Examples of imaginative in a Sentence

She wrote an imaginative story about life on the planet Venus. The restaurant's menu is quite imaginative.

Recent Examples on the Web

Sitcoms, at their least imaginative, are sort of formulaic — and Murphy is not. Jackie Strause, The Hollywood Reporter, "On the Set of 'Murphy Brown' as Candice Bergen, Faith Ford Film the Series Finale," 7 June 2019 And yet — just like the makeup — the result is futurist, imaginative, and 100-percent trend-setting. Marci Robin, Allure, "Lupita Nyong’o Wore the Most Futuristic Hair and Makeup to the Us Premiere at SXSW," 9 Mar. 2019 The African-American experience is equally a tale of successful entrepreneurs and imaginative artists, of lyrical poets and gifted scientists. Amy S. Eckert,, "Art, slavery and civil rights: Black history comes alive at these Midwest museums," 12 Feb. 2018 An imaginative mind can see him in an office, a solver of corporate problems, an idea and detail man in a suit and tie. Staff,, "New on SI TV: Tom Glavine Shuts Out the Indians to Clinch the 1995 World Series," 21 June 2018 This is also where the most imaginative styles are dreamed up. Shammara Lawrence, Teen Vogue, "For Black Women, the Hair Salon and Beauty Supply Store Are Sacred Spaces," 27 Mar. 2019 Mueller’s subtle, highly imaginative use of image and metaphor certainly invites musical setting. John Von Rhein,, "Under Muti's baton, CSO Chorus delivers fervent, sensitive reading of Schubert's Mass in E flat," 23 Mar. 2018 London's formerly traditional hotelscape now is one of the most imaginative and exciting scenes on the planet. Laura Goulden, Condé Nast Traveler, "34 Best Hotels in London," 26 Feb. 2018 Cleveland’s offense was unpredictable, imaginative and wide-open under Kitchens last season. Tom Withers, The Seattle Times, "Browns’ Kitchens hanging on to play-calling duties as coach," 14 Jan. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of imaginative

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for imaginative

Middle English ymaginatif "employing mental images, curious, inventive," borrowed from Middle French & Medieval Latin; Middle French, "of the imagination, having a strong imagination, shrewd," borrowed from Medieval Latin imāginātīvus "of the imagination," from Latin imāginātus, past participle of imāginārī "to imagine" + -īvus -ive

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about imaginative

Statistics for imaginative

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for imaginative

The first known use of imaginative was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for imaginative



English Language Learners Definition of imaginative

: having or showing an ability to think of new and interesting ideas : having or showing imagination
: of or relating to imagination


imag·​i·​na·​tive | \ i-ˈma-jə-nə-tiv How to pronounce imaginative (audio) \

Kids Definition of imaginative

1 : relating to or showing imagination an imaginative story
2 : having a lively imagination an imaginative artist

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on imaginative

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


incapable of being surmounted or overcome

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!