im·​prac·​ti·​ca·​ble (ˌ)im-ˈprak-ti-kə-bəl How to pronounce impracticable (audio)
: impassable
an impracticable road
: not practicable : incapable of being performed or accomplished by the means employed or at command
an impracticable proposal
impracticability noun
impracticably adverb

Example Sentences

an impracticable plan for dealing with the recent intrusion of bears in the suburban neighborhood
Recent Examples on the Web While guides to sustainable touring do exist, their suggestions are often unaffordable or impracticable for most musicians. Jake Blount, Rolling Stone, 14 Sep. 2022 The extensive trade between Mesopotamia and the Indus Valley made regular shipments of gold highly impracticable. Amanda Foreman, WSJ, 17 Mar. 2022 The last thing a comedian wants is to sue or threaten a fan, and such action is often impracticable. Mitra Ahouraian, Forbes, 13 June 2022 What was previously ‘impracticable’ or ‘too costly’ was made possible in a matter of weeks. Caroline Casey, Forbes, 14 Apr. 2022 The series explores the continual pressure exerted on women — and the particular pressure that women exert on themselves — to achieve an impracticable ideal. New York Times, 11 June 2021 However, a personal guarantee becomes impracticable when there are potentially hundreds of owners, and none of them owns more than 20% of the business. Lydia Depillis, ProPublica, 7 June 2021 In any other context, those quarries—now the Carrières des Lumières art venue for light and sound installations—would have been impracticable. Tina Isaac-goizé, Vogue, 4 May 2021 The expectation or requirement of mask-wearing is impracticable to impose only on those who are vulnerable or may be dangerous. Nicole Saphier, WSJ, 2 Apr. 2021 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1653, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of impracticable was in 1653

Dictionary Entries Near impracticable

Cite this Entry

“Impracticable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition


im·​prac·​ti·​ca·​ble (ˈ)im-ˈprak-ti-kə-bəl How to pronounce impracticable (audio)
: difficult to put into practice or use
an impracticable plan
impracticability noun

Legal Definition


im·​prac·​ti·​ca·​ble im-ˈprak-ti-kə-bəl How to pronounce impracticable (audio)
: excessively difficult to perform especially by reason of an unforeseen contingency
a contract made impracticable by the new regulation

More from Merriam-Webster on impracticable

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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

Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?