im·​prob·​a·​ble (ˌ)im-ˈprä-bə-bəl How to pronounce improbable (audio)
: unlikely to be true or to occur
also : unlikely but real or true
(ˌ)im-ˈprä-bə-blē How to pronounce improbable (audio)

Examples of improbable in a Sentence

The team made an improbable comeback. it seems improbable that the two writers never met since they traveled in the same social circles
Recent Examples on the Web Among the 28 schools in 14 divisions and dozens of high school football players attending Monday’s Southern Section championship luncheon on Monday in Long Beach, few had a more improbable story than Simi Valley senior quarterback Jesse Sereno. Iliana Limón Romero, Los Angeles Times, 21 Nov. 2023 So, grab some strappy sandals for a reverent geek-stroll through how this improbable pop opus came together. Jamie Bryan, Rolling Stone, 16 Nov. 2023 Catching up with these companies, among the most dominant in tech, is improbable and ultimately fruitless, Li argued. Paolo Confino, Fortune, 15 Nov. 2023 There were, of course, images that might be described as deepfakes, of politicians and other public figures in improbable situations. Anna Wiener, The New Yorker, 13 Nov. 2023 Miami Hurricanes coach Mario Cristobal had no excuses for the play-calling during the improbable loss to Georgia Tech on Saturday night. Ryan Gaydos, Fox News, 10 Oct. 2023 The improbable effort would require the Treasury Department to defer repayment for several years of a $700 million loan provided to Yellow under a Covid pandemic-era bailout, one of several debts that helped push one of the country’s biggest truckers into collapse earlier this year. Paul Berger, WSJ, 8 Nov. 2023 An undefeated finish, while improbable considering USC’s recent struggles, will have the Trojans (7-2, 5-1 Pac-12) into the conference title game. Thuc Nhi Nguyen, Los Angeles Times, 3 Nov. 2023 Like Noah, Robert built something big and wondrous out of an improbable calling. Liza Lentini, SPIN, 26 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'improbable.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle French or Latin; Middle French, from Latin improbabilis, from in- + probabilis probable

First Known Use

1598, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of improbable was in 1598

Dictionary Entries Near improbable

Cite this Entry

“Improbable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


im·​prob·​a·​ble (ˈ)im-ˈpräb(-ə)-bəl How to pronounce improbable (audio)
: not probable : unlikely to be true or to occur
improbably adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on improbable

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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