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impulse

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verb im·pulse \ˈim-ˌpəls, im-ˈpəls\

Definition of impulse

impulsed

;

impulsing

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to give an impulse to

First Known Use of impulse

1611


2

impulse

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noun im·pulse \ˈim-ˌpəls\

Definition of impulse

  1. 1a :  inspiration, motivationb :  a force so communicated as to produce motion suddenlyc :  incentive

  2. 2a :  the act of driving onward with sudden force :  impulsionb :  motion produced by such an impulsion :  impetusc :  a wave of excitation transmitted through tissues and especially nerve fibers and muscles that results in physiological activity or inhibition — see nerve impluse

  3. 3a :  a sudden spontaneous inclination or incitement to some usually unpremeditated actionb :  a propensity or natural tendency usually other than rational

  4. 4a :  the product of the average value of a force and the time during which it acts :  the change in momentum produced by the forceb :  pulse 4a

Examples of impulse in a Sentence

  1. He has to learn to control his impulses.

  2. the new auto factory was just the impulse that the local economy needed

Origin and Etymology of impulse

Latin impulsus, from impellere to impel

Synonym Discussion of impulse

motive, impulse, incentive, inducement, spur, goad mean a stimulus to action. motive implies an emotion or desire operating on the will and causing it to act. a motive for the crime impulse suggests a driving power arising from personal temperament or constitution. buying on impulse incentive applies to an external influence (such as an expected reward) inciting to action. a bonus was offered as an incentive inducement suggests a motive prompted by the deliberate enticements or allurements of another. offered a watch as an inducement to subscribe spur applies to a motive that stimulates the faculties or increases energy or ardor. fear was a spur to action goad suggests a motive that keeps one going against one's will or desire. thought insecurity a goad to worker efficiency

IMPULSE Defined for English Language Learners

impulse

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noun

Definition of impulse for English Language Learners

  • : a sudden strong desire to do something

  • : a small amount of energy that moves from one area to another


IMPULSE Defined for Kids

impulse

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noun im·pulse \ˈim-ˌpəls\

Definition of impulse for Students

  1. 1 :  a force that starts a body into motion

  2. 2 :  the motion produced by a starting force

  3. 3 :  a strong sudden desire to do something She resisted the impulse to shout.

  4. 4 :  nerve impulse


Medical Dictionary

impulse

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noun im·pulse \ˈim-ˌpəls\

Medical Definition of impulse

  1. 1:  a wave of excitation transmitted through tissues and especially nerve fibers and muscles that results in physiological activity or inhibition

  2. 2a:  a sudden spontaneous inclination or incitement to some usually unpremeditated action some uncontrollable impulse…may have driven the defendant to the commission of the murderous act—B. N. Cardozob:  a propensity or natural tendency usually other than rational the fundamental impulse of self-expression—Havelock Ellis



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