im·​pre·​cise | \ ˌim-pri-ˈsīs How to pronounce imprecise (audio) \

Definition of imprecise

: not precise : inexact, vague an imprecise estimate

Other Words from imprecise

imprecisely adverb
impreciseness noun
imprecision \ ˌim-​pri-​ˈsi-​zhən How to pronounce imprecise (audio) \ noun

Examples of imprecise in a Sentence

It's an imprecise translation of the original sentence. 3.14 is an imprecise approximation of the value of pi
Recent Examples on the Web Comparisons with Papp and the far-larger Public are inevitably imprecise. New York Times, 13 July 2022 Critics noted that many of the drop boxes the group tracked are in busy locations—community centers, libraries—and that cell-phone-tracking data is too imprecise to tell if people were using the drop boxes or simply walking by them. Dan Kaufman, The New Yorker, 25 July 2022 Estimates of the exact efficacy of the three-dose regimen are still imprecise because there have been few cases of Covid in the companies’ clinical trials. Matthew Herper, STAT, 18 June 2022 That makes reservation tallies an imprecise gauge of consumer interest, analysts say. Mike Colias, WSJ, 28 Mar. 2022 Chiefs complained that pass-through traffic in many towns made the measure too imprecise to be useful. Tom Condon,, 31 Jan. 2022 Despite significant improvements, the new models are still too imprecise to be taken at face value, which means climate-change projections still require judgment calls. Robert Lee Hotz, WSJ, 6 Feb. 2022 Less than a decade ago, scientific calculations of the dates of volcanic eruptions used only 16 measurements per ice core to cover 2,000 years of history and included as much as two-century margins of error, too imprecise to be of use to historians. Jacques Leslie, Wired, 15 Jan. 2022 The animal-pelt overlay is applied in such a way that we are made aware of the cutting and pasting involved, the imprecise use of scissors, the shadow at the edges. New York Times, 13 Oct. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of imprecise

1805, in the meaning defined above

Learn More About imprecise

Time Traveler for imprecise

Time Traveler

The first known use of imprecise was in 1805

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near imprecise




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for imprecise

Last Updated

10 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Imprecise.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

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

More Definitions for imprecise


im·​pre·​cise | \ ˌim-pri-ˈsīs How to pronounce imprecise (audio) \

Kids Definition of imprecise

: not clear or exact an imprecise measurement

More from Merriam-Webster on imprecise

Nglish: Translation of imprecise for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of imprecise for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

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!