impotent

play
adjective im·po·tent \ˈim-pə-tənt\

Definition of impotent

  1. 1a :  not potent :  lacking in power, strength, or vigor :  helplessb :  unable to engage in sexual intercourse because of inability to have and maintain an erection; broadly :  sterile

  2. 2 obsolete :  incapable of self-restraint :  ungovernable

impotent

noun

impotently

adverb

Examples of impotent in a sentence

  1. an impotent ruler who was just a figurehead

Did You Know?

A police department may be impotent to stop the flow of drugs into a neighborhood. A group of countries may be impotent to force another country to change its human-rights policies. The impotence of a prime minister may be shown by her inability to get an important piece of legislation passed. Impotent and impotence may also have a special meaning, when they refer to a man's inability to have sexual intercourse.

Origin and Etymology of impotent

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin impotent-, impotens, from in- + potent-, potens potent


First Known Use: 14th century


IMPOTENT Defined for English Language Learners

impotent

play
adjective im·po·tent \ˈim-pə-tənt\

Definition of impotent for English Language Learners

  • : lacking power or strength

  • of a man : unable to have sex : unable to get or keep an erection


IMPOTENT Defined for Kids

impotent

play
adjective im·po·tent \ˈim-pə-tənt\

Definition of impotent for Students

  1. :  lacking in power, ability, or strength an impotent medicine


Medical Dictionary

impotent

play
adjective im·po·tent \ˈim-pət-ənt\

Medical Definition of impotent

  1. 1:  not potent an impotent vaccine

  2. 2:  unable to engage in sexual intercourse because of inability to have and maintain an erection; broadly :  sterile



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