invaluable

adjective
in·​valu·​able | \ (ˌ)in-ˈval-yə-bəl, -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 , -​yə-​wə-​blē, -​yü(-​ə)-​blē \ adverb

Synonyms for invaluable

Synonyms

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

Well, for me especially, being able to help other people give back, being able to lend a voice to those who might not have one, or fight for justice where it's not found or it's being threatened—that is its own invaluable reward. Krystin Arneson, Glamour, "Amber Heard Is Really Sick of the Dumb Blonde Cliché," 6 Jan. 2019 The luxury tour company was founded 17 years ago by American transplant Karen Fedorko Sefer; full-time guides like Istanbul native Anka Benli cobble together seamless itineraries offering behind-the-scenes access and invaluable commentary. Ashlea Halpern, Condé Nast Traveler, "Three Days In Istanbul," 28 Dec. 2018 But Parker is carrying another instrument that could prove invaluable in decoding the sun: simple cameras. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "The New Science of the Sun Will Be Astounding—And Possibly Terrifying," 9 Aug. 2018 Both Harrell and Anderson recommend baby blankets and wraps as invaluable and easy to care for. Naomi Williamson, Woman's Day, "10 Things Never to Buy a New Mom," 23 July 2014 Over the course of the series, an uneasy alliance develops, as her intellect and insight into the serial-killer nature prove to be invaluable. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Luther is back and as broody as ever in new trailer for fifth season," 29 Nov. 2018 And while the champagne was flowing well into the night, the evening also paid homage to tennis legends Rod Laver, Björn Borg, and John McEnroe for their invaluable contributions to the sport. Vogue, "Champagne and Tennis: The Laver Cup Opening Night Gala," 21 Sep. 2018 During its long mission, Dawn made invaluable contributions to science including mapping the entire surface of both worlds, discovering water on Vesta, and discovering ice volcanoes on the surface of Ceres. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "NASA's Asteroid Belt Spacecraft Dawn Is About To Run Out of Fuel," 11 Sep. 2018 This feature is invaluable when creating brochures, newsletters, and other layout designs that incorporate a lot of text and graphics in the same document. Jd Sartain, PCWorld, "How to create and share custom Style Sheets in Word and PowerPoint," 8 Aug. 2018

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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Dictionary Entries near invaluable

invalidism

invalidity

invalidness

invaluable

invalued

Invar

invariable

Statistics for invaluable

Last Updated

16 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for invaluable

The first known use of invaluable was in 1576

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More Definitions for invaluable

invaluable

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of invaluable

: extremely valuable or useful

invaluable

adjective
in·​valu·​able | \ in-ˈval-yə-wə-bəl \

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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