Definition of impediment
1 : something that impedes; especially : an impairment (such as a stutter or a lisp) that interferes with the proper articulation of speech
2 : a bar or hindrance (such as lack of sufficient age) to a lawful marriage
Examples of impediment in a Sentence
tough going for the burros on the canyon trail, even without the added impediment of heavy loads
Recent Examples of impediment from the Web
Now, instead of supplying key government support for the technological developments that have dazzled the world as American individuals and businesses have reached toward the future, under Trump, the government will act as an impediment to progress.
These are the kinds of impediments to good health a doctor will never see.
CAMDEN, N.J. — Jurors in New Jersey weighing the fate of a man accused of killing his 3-year-old son because the boy had become an impediment to his relationship with a teenage girlfriend have returned for a fifth day of deliberations.
The chief impediments came in the form of two surgeries on his right knee within eight months, wiping away the vast majority of his junior campaign and most of the offseason heading into his senior year.
In addition, workers had to deal not only with extreme cold, but with a variety of other impediments as well: floods and landslides, armed bandits, cholera, anthrax … even an occasional tiger.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'impediment'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Impediment comes from a Latin verb that meant "to interfere with" or "to get in the way of progress", as if by tripping up the feet of someone walking. In English, impediment still suggests an obstruction or obstacle along a path; for example, a lack of adequate roads and bridges would be called an impediment to economic development. Impediments usually get in the way of something we want. So we may speak of an impediment to communication, marriage, or progress--but something that slows the progress of aging, disease, or decay is rarely called an impediment.
First Known Use of impediment
IMPEDIMENT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of impediment for English Language Learners
: something that makes it difficult to do or complete something : something that interferes with movement or progress
: a condition that makes it difficult to speak normally
IMPEDIMENT Defined for Kids
Definition of impediment for Students
1 : something that interferes with movement or progress
2 : a condition that makes it difficult to speak normally
Word Root of impediment
The Latin word pes, meaning “foot,” and its form pedis give us the root ped. A pedestrian is a person who travels on foot. Before trains, planes, and cars, an expedition, or journey, was often carried out by foot. An impediment makes movement or progress difficult, as if getting in the way of the feet.
Legal Definition of impediment
: something that prevents or interferes with a process, power, or right should have known of the legal impediments to the execution of any judgment against the police jury — Penalber v. Blount, 550 So. 2d 577 (1989); specifically : a bar to the formation of a valid contract or marriage — compare nullity
Seen and Heard
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