Definition of impute
- our vices as well as our virtues have been imputed to bodily derangement
- —B. N. Cardozo
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
people often impute his silence to unfriendliness and not to the shyness it really represents
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'impute.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Impute is a somewhat formal word that is used to suggest that someone or something has done or is guilty of something. It is similar in meaning to such words as ascribe and attribute, though it is more likely to suggest an association with something that brings discredit. When we impute something, we typically impute it to someone or something. You may also encounter the related noun imputation, which appears in such contexts as "I deny all your imputations of blame." Another sense of impute means "to calculate as a value or cost (as for taxation)," as in "impute a benefit from the use of the car."
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
: to say or suggest that someone or something has or is guilty of (something)
What made you want to look up impute? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
Merriam-Webster's New Words Quiz—Fall 2017 Edition!
Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!TAKE THE QUIZ
Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.TAKE THE QUIZ