in·​valu·​able | \ (ˌ)in-ˈval-yə-bəl How to pronounce invaluable (audio) , -yə-wə-bəl, -yü(-ə)-bəl\

Definition of invaluable

: valuable beyond estimation : priceless providing invaluable assistance

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Other Words from invaluable

invaluableness noun
invaluably \ (ˌ)in-​ˈval-​yə-​blē How to pronounce invaluably (audio) , -​yə-​wə-​blē , -​yü(-​ə)-​blē \ adverb

Synonyms for invaluable


inestimable, priceless

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invaluable = valuable?

Many people find it confusing that the in- prefix at the beginning of invaluable apparently lacks the meaning "not" found in a number of other words, such as invalid, inarticulate, and insane. In fact, the prefix does indicate negation, but in a way that is not immediately obvious. The original (and current) meaning of invaluable is "valuable beyond estimation"; the word describes something so precious that one cannot assign a price to it. This, clearly, is the opposite of the meaning "having no value; valueless" that the word might seem to carry. Invaluable actually has been recorded in the sense "without value," but such use has been exceedingly rare and is practically nonexistent today.

Examples of invaluable in a Sentence

Unfortunately, though, Sally does not respond to lithium, which has been invaluable for many patients with manic-depressive illness … — Oliver Sacks, New York Review of Books, 25 Sept. 2008 … the scrolls provide an invaluable snapshot of at least one important strain in early Judaism—though they are by no means a complete record of Jewish belief at that time. — Jeremy Lott, Lingua Franca, February 2001 I stayed there only a month or so but it was an invaluable experience …  : that month's residence provided the inspiration for a novel I wrote much later, Sophie's Choice. — William Styron, This Quiet Dust and Other Writings, (1953) 1982 Their help has been invaluable to us. the list of likely donors proved to be invaluable to our fund-raising efforts
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Recent Examples on the Web

Iguodala, who wore No. 9, averaged just 7.3 points per game in the regular season as a Warrior, but his court savvy and his ability to guard any opponent’s best wing scorer were invaluable. Michael Nowels, The Mercury News, "Warriors finalize Iguodala trade to Memphis, plan to retire his jersey," 7 July 2019 His veteran’s touch would be invaluable in that setting. Bruce Jenkins,, "Warriors’ aftermath: Was it worth all that?," 2 July 2019 Machine learning is also making breakthroughs in science and tech fields, which means a supercomputer that can run the world’s most powerful machine-learning algorithms is an invaluable asset. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "The United States Has the World's Fastest Supercomputer Again," 8 June 2018 When that city is as vast as Houston, working with a Realtor who is knowledgeable about the local market can be an invaluable asset. Houston Chronicle, "On the Move: Choosing a Realtor for the move to Houston," 8 Apr. 2018 Informed Immigrants and United We Dream have one-sheets and red cards that offer clear, simple instructions for individuals who have been detained and how families can help. Circulating these resources around are invaluable. Joshua Bote And Briana Sanchez, USA TODAY, "How to help families and children at the border: Volunteer, donate, speak out," 26 June 2019 This platform has proven to be invaluable for lesser-known candidates. Wayne Messam, Fortune, "Wayne Messam: Money Kept Me Out of the First Democratic Debate. Will It Keep Me Out of the Second?," 25 June 2019 For young and emerging winemakers, this degree of support is unusual — and invaluable. Jordan Michelman,, "Forget bottles, cans and boxes: Kegged wine is what's next," 21 June 2019 For programs such as Team Phillipines, which is truly in its infancy, incorporating those experienced young players has been invaluable. Nate Weitzer,, "Other countries want to boost their lacrosse teams, and they’re turning to Boston talent for help," 14 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'invaluable.' 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 invaluable

1576, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for invaluable

in- entry 1 + value, verb + -able

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Statistics for invaluable

Last Updated

17 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for invaluable

The first known use of invaluable was in 1576

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More Definitions for invaluable



English Language Learners Definition of invaluable

: extremely valuable or useful


in·​valu·​able | \ in-ˈval-yə-wə-bəl How to pronounce invaluable (audio) \

Kids Definition of invaluable

: priceless … his advice and counsel will prove invaluable in dealing with such problems as might arise.— Robert Lawson, Rabbit Hill

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Comments on invaluable

What made you want to look up invaluable? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


food or victuals

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