im·​pos·​si·​ble | \ (ˌ)im-ˈpä-sə-bəl How to pronounce impossible (audio) \

Definition of impossible

1a : incapable of being or of occurring
b : felt to be incapable of being done, attained, or fulfilled : insuperably difficult an impossible deadline
2a : extremely undesirable : unacceptable
b : extremely awkward or difficult to deal with the actor was impossible on the set

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Other Words from impossible

impossibleness noun

Examples of impossible in a Sentence

It's impossible to predict the future. The heavy rain made it impossible to see the road. It's physically impossible for a child to lift that much at once. It's virtually impossible to book a flight just before the holiday. These math problems are impossible! You refuse to help and then criticize me for not doing it right? You're impossible! My boss is just an impossible woman.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The heart of this particular genre’s appeal is watching somebody do the impossible — fight an entire world of enemies singlehandedly, and win — but without the superheroic gifts that dominate the defining genre of our time. Ross Douthat, National Review, "Keanu Reeves’ Dance with Death in John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum," 20 June 2019 There are five hotels in Rancho Bernardo and trying to find a vacant room will be next to impossible. Pomerado News, "World’s best junior golfers coming to Rancho Bernardo," 19 June 2019 Netanyahu has repeatedly tried to push back a pre-indictment hearing, most recently claiming that upcoming elections in September make an October hearing impossible. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "Sara Netanyahu, wife of Israel’s prime minister, sentenced for corruption," 16 June 2019 Don't hesitate to stretch and reach for the seemingly impossible., "Horoscope," 10 June 2019 But the truth is that being financially successful is almost impossible without making a budget. Jo Yurcaba, Woman's Day, "How to Make a Budget That's Easy to Understand and Easier to Follow," 10 June 2019 In Bangladesh, for example, rice agriculture is increasingly impossible as fields are flooded with seawater. Adam Moolna, Quartz India, "How mangroves could protect us from storms like Cyclone Fani," 7 June 2019 So the 34-year-old go-getter has set out to do the impossible: Recruit and elect more Republican women to Congress, even as national support for the GOP among women and young people is waning. Rebecca Gale, Marie Claire, "Elise Stefanik Is Going to Bring Women Back to the GOP," 25 Mar. 2019 As a result, the SNES Classic never ran into the same impossible-to-find supply issues as the NES model. Dami Lee, The Verge, "Nintendo’s NES Classic and SNES Classic are going out of production," 14 Dec. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for impossible

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin impossibilis, from in- + possibilis possible

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Statistics for impossible

Last Updated

24 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for impossible

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

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English Language Learners Definition of impossible

: unable to be done or to happen : not possible
: very difficult
of a person : very difficult to deal with : very irritating or annoying


im·​pos·​si·​ble | \ im-ˈpä-sə-bəl How to pronounce impossible (audio) \

Kids Definition of impossible

1 : incapable of being or of occurring : not possible The noise makes it impossible to concentrate.
2 : very difficult These math problems are impossible!
3 : very bad or unpleasant She is impossible to deal with.

Other Words from impossible

impossibly \ -​blē \ adverb



Legal Definition of impossible

: not possible : incapable of being done, attained, or fulfilled a party's performance is impossible in part

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Comments on impossible

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


showing courage and determination

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