im·​pute | \ im-ˈpyüt How to pronounce impute (audio) \
imputed; imputing

Definition of impute

transitive verb

1 : to lay the responsibility or blame for (something) often falsely or unjustly The economic sins imputed to Tito had all been committed to a greater extent by the communist parties of neighbouring countries.— Hugh Seton-Watson
2 : to credit or ascribe (something) to a person or a cause : attribute our vices as well as our virtues have been imputed to bodily derangement— B. N. Cardozo

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Other Words from impute

imputability \ im-​ˌpyü-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce imputability (audio) \ noun
imputable \ im-​ˈpyü-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce imputable (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for impute

ascribe, attribute, assign, impute, credit mean to lay something to the account of a person or thing. ascribe suggests an inferring or conjecturing of cause, quality, authorship. forged paintings formerly ascribed to masters attribute suggests less tentativeness than ascribe, less definiteness than assign. attributed to Rembrandt but possibly done by an associate assign implies ascribing with certainty or after deliberation. assigned the bones to the Cretaceous period impute suggests ascribing something that brings discredit by way of accusation or blame. tried to impute sinister motives to my actions credit implies ascribing a thing or especially an action to a person or other thing as its agent, source, or explanation. credited his teammates for his success

Put the Valuable Impute Into Your Vocabulary

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."

Examples of impute in a Sentence

people often impute his silence to unfriendliness and not to the shyness it really represents

Recent Examples on the Web

Left to their own devices, investors start to impute greater significance to key thresholds. The Economist, "How yuan-dollar became the world’s most closely watched asset price," 8 Aug. 2019 The consumption and income data available in the U.S. are both subject to error, but the consumption data provide more information than income data to impute noncash housing benefits and the service flow from vehicle and home ownership. Dylan Matthews, Vox, "How many Americans live on $2 a day? The biggest debate in poverty research, explained.," 5 June 2019 Stated differently, by criticizing an entire program, the NCAA allegedly imputed wrongful acts on members of the program who were innocent. Michael Mccann,, "Should the NCAA Be Worried About the Lawsuit It's Facing From Former Louisville Players?," 12 July 2018 An obvious example is the law passed recently criminalizing speech that imputes to Poland complicity in the Holocaust. Tunku Varadarajan, WSJ, "If America Is Divided, So Is Europe," 6 July 2018 These words, allegedly, imputed a lack of ability or integrity on the part of Amann to satisfactorily perform his duties as a physician. Michael Mccann,, "What Were the Key Factors Behind CM Punk Winning His Defamation Trial?," 5 June 2018 Statistical methods used to impute numbers in census tracts that were not physically counted have been phased out as the volunteer force grew large enough reach every tract. Doug Smith,, "Statistical error inflated last year's homeless count by more than 2,700," 19 May 2018 Under previous rules, lenders were forced to impute payment terms for borrowers using these plans. Kenneth R. Harney,, "Lean in, homebuyers: Survey says lenders loosening mortgage standards," 28 Nov. 2017 What is the full range of computational inference (using existing data Facebook has collected or purchased or otherwise obtained to infer or impute other traits, or classify people into groups) that is done on Facebook users? Alexis C. Madrigal, The Atlantic, "What Congress Should Ask Mark Zuckerberg," 28 Mar. 2018

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.

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First Known Use of impute

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for impute

Middle English, from Anglo-French imputer, from Latin imputare, from in- + putare to consider

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Last Updated

16 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for impute

The first known use of impute was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of impute

formal : to say or suggest that someone or something has or is guilty of (something)
im·​pute | \ im-ˈpyüt How to pronounce impute (audio) \
imputed; imputing

Legal Definition of impute

1 : to consider or calculate as a value or cost (as for taxation) broadly : to reckon as an actual thing impute a benefit from the use of the car
2 in the civil law of Louisiana : to direct (payment) to principal or interest
3 : to attribute to a party especially because of responsibility for another impute knowledge to his corporate superior

Other Words from impute

imputation \ ˌim-​pyə-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce imputation (audio) \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on impute

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for impute

Spanish Central: Translation of impute

Nglish: Translation of impute for Spanish Speakers

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