im·​ple·​ment | \ ˈim-plə-mənt How to pronounce implement (audio) \

Definition of implement

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a device used in the performance of a task : tool, utensil
2 : one that serves as an instrument or tool the partnership agreement does not seem to be a very potent implement— H. B. Hoffman
3 : an article serving to equip the implements of religious worship


im·​ple·​ment | \ ˈim-plə-ˌment How to pronounce implement (audio) \
implemented; implementing; implements

Definition of implement (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : carry out, accomplish especially : to give practical effect to and ensure of actual fulfillment by concrete measures
2 : to provide instruments or means of expression for

Other Words from implement


implementer or implementor \ ˈim-​plə-​ˌmen-​tər How to pronounce implement (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for implement

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Choose the Right Synonym for implement


implement, tool, instrument, appliance, utensil mean a relatively simple device for performing work. implement may apply to anything necessary to perform a task. crude stone implements farm implements tool suggests an implement adapted to facilitate a definite kind or stage of work and suggests the need of skill more strongly than implement. a carpenter's tools instrument suggests a device capable of delicate or precise work. the dentist's instruments appliance refers to a tool or instrument utilizing a power source and suggests portability or temporary attachment. household appliances utensil applies to a device used in domestic work or some routine unskilled activity. kitchen utensils

Examples of implement in a Sentence

Noun They eat with us, do the beach with us; the girls, K.C. and Jessica, buy kitchen implements for us, come over to casually straighten up, make beds, clear the dishes from the sink and the bedrooms … — Dave Eggers, A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, 2000 In the toolhouse … there were also antique implements worn like prehistoric artifacts: an ancient oblong pink whetstone pointed at either end and soapily warped by all its use, and an old-fashioned square hoe worn into a lopsided metal oval … — John Updike, The Afterlife, 1994 There was a little implement called a lemon zester that she had bought from a door-to-door salesman. — Ann Beattie, New Yorker, 28 Dec. 1987 stone implements used in prehistoric times a sharp-edged implement used to chop wood Verb A federal interagency group should develop and implement a risk management strategy to reduce human exposure to dioxins and dioxin-like chemicals in food, says a report from the Institute of Medicine … — Bette Hileman, Chemical & Engineering News, 7 July 2003 … drew scattered snickers when he implemented a dress code for Senate staffers … — Michelle Cottle, New Republic, 12 July 1999 States remain years behind in implementing child support regulations … New York Times, 30 Dec. 1997 I wondered how I might best implement his plan. Due to high costs, the program was never fully implemented. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Historically, when a person working the land in Australia needed to replace an implement, there would be a six-month turnaround, as the sailing ship went off to Merry Old England and then sailed back with the replacement. Greg Story, Forbes, 17 Aug. 2022 Smith will lead Camber in helping more than 300 outdoor industry partners including REI, Timberline, Smartwool, CamelBak, Topo Designs, Thule, Rivian, Jack Wolfskin, and YETI implement DEI practices in their workplaces. Steve Larese, Outside Online, 29 June 2022 According to Turkish authorities, that’s the implement that Mohammed’s henchmen allegedly used on Oct. 2, 2018, to dismember Jamal Khashoggi, a Post columnist and Saudi dissident. Washington Post, 8 Mar. 2022 Edging garden beds is one of those things that on the outside one, seems like a minor and fussy detail, but isn’t, two, looks easy, but isn’t, and three, can be done with any old garden implement ... Paul Cappiello, The Courier-Journal, 13 May 2022 But in humans, similar features are usually associated with tool use such as cleaning teeth with a long, sharp implement or processing animal hides—behaviors that Koshima macaques do not display. Joanna Thompson, Scientific American, 18 Apr. 2022 The simple but harder-to-implement solution is to educate consumers on how to safeguard their digital identities online. Mathias Klenk, Forbes, 8 Oct. 2021 Lampard needs results straight away, and there will be no time to experiment with implement a playing style at the expense of points on the board, although at the same time the style needs to change in order to get those results. James Nalton, Forbes, 31 Jan. 2022 The White House more than doubled the goal of federal contract dollars being channeled to these businesses, from 5 percent to 11 percent, and asked individual agencies to design an implement processes and protocols aimed at achieving these goals. NBC News, 27 Jan. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But Grady noted that Cartwright had been before the state board previously to defend the district’s decision to implement a mask mandate for students to help protect against COVID-19, defying a directive of the state Health Department. Scott Travis, Sun Sentinel, 15 Sep. 2022 The proposal to implement CARE Court, Senate Bill 1338, sailed through the Legislature with only two votes in opposition, in the Assembly. Los Angeles Times, 14 Sep. 2022 Natasha Sarin, the Treasury Department official helping implement the IRS changes, said taxpayers should expect a significantly higher level of service in the next filing season as the IRS digs out from its pandemic-era tax return backlog. Richard Rubin, WSJ, 25 Aug. 2022 Marriott has until January to implement the changes. Christopher Elliott, Washington Post, 19 Aug. 2022 Appointing Mary Wakefield as senior counselor to implement the changes. CBS News, 17 Aug. 2022 Homeless advocates called conditions at the camp dangerous and deplorable last week, calling on the administration to implement major changes in operations there. Emily Goodykoontz, Anchorage Daily News, 19 July 2022 Signed in December 2018, President Donald Trump made true on a promise to implement the changes that allowed lower security inmates a chance to reduce their prison terms by participating in programming and productive activities. Walter Pavlo, Forbes, 15 July 2022 The Department of Public Works could then decide to implement more permanent changes based on successful projects. Kayla Dwyer, The Indianapolis Star, 15 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of implement


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3


1806, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for implement


Middle English, "supplementary payment needed to complete the sum due," borrowed from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French, "appurtenances (as furniture or equipment) belonging to a household or property," borrowed from Medieval Latin implēmentum "making up to a full complement (of a former state, extent or value), item contributing to the entirety of a property, appurtenance, fixture," going back to Late Latin, "act of filling, replenishment," from Latin implēre "to fill, provide in full measure, fill up, occupy, amount to, perform, carry out" (from im- im- + plēre "to fill") + -mentum -ment — more at full entry 1

Note: Regarding the currency of the verb plēre in Latin see note at complete entry 1.


derivative of implement entry 1

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

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Last Updated

19 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Implement.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for implement


im·​ple·​ment | \ ˈim-plə-mənt How to pronounce implement (audio) \

Kids Definition of implement

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an object (as a tool) intended for a certain use farm implements


im·​ple·​ment | \ ˈim-plə-ˌment How to pronounce implement (audio) \
implemented; implementing

Kids Definition of implement (Entry 2 of 2)

: to begin to do or use something They're implementing the plan.

More from Merriam-Webster on implement

Nglish: Translation of implement for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of implement for Arabic Speakers


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