1

impromptu

noun im·promp·tu \ im-ˈpräm(p)-(ˌ)tü , -(ˌ)tyü \

Definition of impromptu

1 :something that is impromptu
2 :a musical composition suggesting improvisation

impromptu was our Word of the Day on 02/29/2008. Hear the podcast!

Examples of impromptu in a Sentence

  1. although five different lines had been written, the best choice turned out to be an impromptu from the tired actor himself

Origin and Etymology of impromptu

French, from impromptu extemporaneously, from Latin in promptu in readiness

impromptu Synonyms


2

impromptu

adjective

Definition of impromptu

1 :made, done, or formed on or as if on the spur of the moment :improvised
2 :composed or uttered without previous preparation :extemporaneous

impromptu

adverb

Examples of impromptu in a Sentence

  1. Two of my friends came by unexpectedly, and we had an impromptu little party in my kitchen.

  2. He made an impromptu speech about honor and responsibility.

Recent Examples of impromptu from the Web

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

Did You Know?

If you think that "impromptu" looks like a relative of "prompt," you're right; both are ultimately derived from the Latin promere, meaning "to bring forth, take out." "Impromptu" was borrowed from French, where it meant "extemporaneously," but French speakers picked it up from the Latin phrase in promptu, a "promere" descendant meaning "in readiness" or "at hand." There is also another, much rarer descendant of "promere" in English - the noun promptuary, meaning "a book of ready reference."

First Known Use of impromptu

1764


IMPROMPTU Defined for English Language Learners

impromptu

adjective

Definition of impromptu for English Language Learners

  • : not prepared ahead of time : made or done without preparation


IMPROMPTU Defined for Kids

impromptu

adjective im·promp·tu \ im-ˈprämp-tü , -tyü \

Definition of impromptu for Students

:not prepared ahead of time :made or done without preparation
  • an impromptu speech


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