im·​mac·​u·​late | \ i-ˈma-kyə-lət How to pronounce immaculate (audio) \

Definition of immaculate

1 : having no stain or blemish : pure an immaculate heart
2 : having or containing no flaw or error an immaculate record of service in immaculate detail
3a : spotlessly clean an immaculate kitchen immaculate uniforms
b : having no colored spots or marks used especially in botany and zoology petals immaculate

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Other Words from immaculate

immaculately adverb
immaculateness noun
… the immaculateness of scrubbed decks … — William Sansom

Did You Know?

The opposite of immaculate is maculate, which means "marked with spots" or "impure." The Latin word maculatus, the past participle of a verb meaning "to stain," is the source of both words and can be traced back to macula, a word that scientists still use for spots on the skin, on the wings of insects, and on the surface of celestial objects. Maculate has not marked as many pages as immaculate, but it has appeared occasionally (one might say "spottily"), especially as an antithesis to immaculate. We find the pair, for example, in an article by Peter Schjeldahl in an April 2004 issue of The New Yorker: "Rob's apartment, with its immaculate ranks of album spines and its all too maculate strewing of everything else…."

Examples of immaculate in a Sentence

… they seemed as remote from metaphysics as their lunch bags and knapsacks. Yet weren't they all heading for those immaculate country snowfields to talk of God? — Cynthia Ozick, Atlantic, May 1997 … and added to this was the fact that this Soviet Army Colonel had a service record that was as immaculate as a field of freshly fallen snow … — Tom Clancy, The Cardinal of the Kremlin, (1988) 1989 I was expecting some giant to emerge, but in came a tiny, immaculate, white-haired man. — Anna Russell, I'm Not Making This Up, You Know, 1985 She had an immaculate record of service. somehow managed to keep the white carpet immaculate
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Recent Examples on the Web

At a Kimbanguist service in Goma the congregation sits barefoot, wearing immaculate green and white uniforms. The Economist, "Kimbanguists believe Congo’s suffering is a sign of the apocalypse," 29 Aug. 2019 Inside the immaculate indoor training facility, which Jerry Jr. approved for $29 million, the players gather for a team meeting before practice. Los Angeles Times, "Look out Notre Dame, the Falwells have big plans for Liberty football," 27 Aug. 2019 Jandel Gustave fell one strike short of an immaculate innings but retired the Cubs 1-2-3, a near-miracle on this night. Henry Schulman,, "Giants’ offense awakens but Cubs outslug SF 12-11 at Wrigley Field," 21 Aug. 2019 Reds starter Kevin Gausman, a Grandview High School grad, on Sunday became just the seventh player in major league history to throw at least two immaculate innings — three strikeouts in nine pitches — in his career. Joe Nguyen, The Denver Post, "This former Colorado prep star did something only 4 Baseball Hall of Famers and 2 perennial all-stars have done," 21 Aug. 2019 No phrase was insignificant; his performance wasn’t immaculate, but his spirit was boundless. Zoë Madonna,, "Three conductors made for three days of thrills with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood," 12 Aug. 2019 Either way, spacious and flexible living spaces feature immaculate kitchens opening to luxurious great rooms as well as nooks for privacy. Cameron Sullivan, The Mercury News, "Sponsored: House hunt while on the way to the coast," 26 July 2019 The tour is well worth taking, because of the immaculate preservation of the house. Linda Gandee/special To,, "Crafts, antiques attract big audience to annual Westlake Historical Society show," 15 July 2019 The company’s immaculate displays and overflowing cases of prepared food have gone on to influence mainstream grocers. Maura Judkis, Washington Post, "Dean & DeLuca’s future is bleak. But when it opened it was a game-changer.," 12 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'immaculate.' 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 immaculate

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for immaculate

Middle English immaculat, from Latin immaculatus, from in- + maculatus stained — more at maculate

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Statistics for immaculate

Last Updated

7 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for immaculate

The first known use of immaculate was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for immaculate



English Language Learners Definition of immaculate

: perfectly clean
: having no flaw or error


im·​mac·​u·​late | \ i-ˈma-kyə-lət How to pronounce immaculate (audio) \

Kids Definition of immaculate

1 : perfectly clean
2 : having no flaw or error He has an immaculate record.

Other Words from immaculate

immaculately adverb

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Comments on immaculate

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


one from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

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