im·​pos·​ing | \ im-ˈpō-ziŋ How to pronounce imposing (audio) \

Definition of imposing

: impressive in size, bearing, dignity, or grandeur

Other Words from imposing

imposingly \ im-​ˈpō-​ziŋ-​lē How to pronounce imposing (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for imposing

grand, magnificent, imposing, stately, majestic, grandiose mean large and impressive. grand adds to greatness of size the implications of handsomeness and dignity. a grand staircase magnificent implies an impressive largeness proportionate to scale without sacrifice of dignity or good taste. magnificent paintings imposing implies great size and dignity but especially stresses impressiveness. an imposing edifice stately may suggest poised dignity, erectness of bearing, handsomeness of proportions, ceremonious deliberation of movement. the stately procession majestic combines the implications of imposing and stately and usually adds a suggestion of solemn grandeur. a majestic waterfall grandiose implies a size or scope exceeding ordinary experience grandiose hydroelectric projects but is most commonly applied derogatorily to inflated pretension or absurd exaggeration. grandiose schemes

Examples of imposing in a Sentence

He's an imposing man with a powerful voice. the president of the bank is exactly the sort of imposing figure that one might expect
Recent Examples on the Web The rest of his intervention is marked by several strong gestures, the most imposing of which is the monumental travertine fireplace in the dining room, whose geometric forms are meant as a nod to the work of Carlo Scarpa. Ian Phillips, ELLE Decor, 1 June 2022 An inch here, a millimeter there, even the most imposing ranges were built in increments; rocky peaks rising pebble by pebble. Jessica Kiang, Variety, 18 May 2022 The exterior design only adds to the grandeur, with its full-width second-floor Juliet balcony featuring a delicate, cast-iron railing, lovely arched windows and an imposing front entrance with arched stonework. Howard Walker, Robb Report, 15 Mar. 2022 Adding Freeman gives the Dodgers an even more imposing lineup. Beth Harris, ajc, 17 Mar. 2022 His non-imposing, reflective, piano-forward compositions augment the emotional crux of scenes where Peter and Emma begin falling for each other, inadvertently hurt each other and inevitably iron out their lives. Courtney Howard, Variety, 9 Feb. 2022 What makes Arizona more frightening than the Bulldogs is its superior rebounding and shot-blocking behind an imposing front line of 7-foot-1 center Christian Koloko and 6-11 forward Azuolas Tubelis. Ben Bolch, Los Angeles Times, 24 Jan. 2022 The ability to provide aerial refueling virtually anywhere around the world is one of the enablers that makes the U.S. Air Force unique; the advent of information warfare has not made Air Force expectations for its tankers any less imposing. Loren Thompson, Forbes, 18 Jan. 2022 Then the in-demand defensive coordinator accepted a more imposing challenge in December: making Duke football competitive in the Atlantic Coast Conference as the Blue Devils’ new head coach. Brent Zwerneman, San Antonio Express-News, 4 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of imposing

1786, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About imposing

Time Traveler for imposing

Time Traveler

The first known use of imposing was in 1786

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near imposing

impose one's will



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for imposing

Cite this Entry

“Imposing.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for imposing


im·​pos·​ing | \ im-ˈpō-ziŋ \

Kids Definition of imposing

: impressive because of size, dignity, or magnificence The Army of Glinda the Good looked very grand and imposing— L. Frank Baum, The Marvelous Land of Oz

More from Merriam-Webster on imposing

Nglish: Translation of imposing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of imposing for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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