in·vent | \in-ˈvent \
invented; inventing; invents

Definition of invent 

transitive verb

1 : to produce (something, such as a useful device or process) for the first time through the use of the imagination or of ingenious thinking and experiment

2 : to devise by thinking : fabricate

3 archaic : find, discover

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Other Words from invent

inventor \in-ˈven-tər \ noun
inventress \in-ˈven-trəs \ noun

Examples of invent in a Sentence

Thomas Edison invented the phonograph. She is credited with inventing a procedure that has helped to save thousands of lives. She invented a clever excuse. We found out that he had invented the stories he told us about his military service.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In a country that virtually invented soccer hooliganism, and gave rise to the millionaire Premier League rock star, Southgate during his own career was the quietly competent second-stringer, no drama, all work ethic. Karla Adam, Washington Post, "Win or lose in the World Cup, England has a national hero in Coach Gareth Southgate," 11 July 2018 Sindone said in Western countries, including the U.S., an individual invents something and gets a patent for that invention, which usually protects the inventor for a certain number of years. Karen Caffarini, Post-Tribune, "As tariffs begin, Northwest Indiana auto workers and farmers share concerns," 10 July 2018 Writer Jay Longino and director Charles Stone III craft an underdog story around the character of Uncle Drew, a septuagenarian street baller invented and performed by 26-year-old Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving. Katie Walsh, kansascity, "In ‘Uncle Drew,’ NBA greats bring moves and charm to basketball underdog comedy," 28 June 2018 Bodvar winery takes credit for inventing it just three years ago, declaring that it should be celebrated on the second Saturday of June. Ben Meyerson, RedEye Chicago, "Legally Blonde 3, fanny pack sandals and more conversation starters for your weekend," 8 June 2018 Italian-American folks from Philadelphia invented the stromboli and named it after an Italian island called... Alex Delany, Bon Appetit, "This Tax Season Stromboli Recipe Is My Only Dependent," 9 Apr. 2018 Mitch Hurwitz, who invented and writes 'Arrested Development,' a genius. Kristi Turnquist,, "Henry Winkler in Portland: On HBO's 'Barry,' and why he loved playing the Fonz," 28 Mar. 2018 Tom is a bit of a Luddite, even though (or maybe because) his father invented the Feed and changed their world irrevocably by doing so. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "Nick Clark Windo’s The Feed is highly relevant after the Cambridge Analytica fiasco," 25 Mar. 2018 Mortara Instrument invents and manufactures medical devices for diagnostic cardiology and patient monitoring. Steve Jagler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Jagler: Justin Mortara sold his company for $330 million. What now?," 16 Mar. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for invent

Middle English, from Latin inventus, past participle of invenire to come upon, find, from in- + venire to come — more at come

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Statistics for invent

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for invent

The first known use of invent was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of invent

: to create or produce (something useful) for the first time

: to create or make up (something, such as a story) in order to trick people


in·vent | \in-ˈvent \
invented; inventing

Kids Definition of invent

1 : to create or produce for the first time Thomas Edison invented the light bulb.

2 : to think up : make up She invented an excuse for being late.

Other Words from invent

inventor \-ˈvent-ər \ noun

Legal Definition of invent 

: to create or produce for the first time

Other Words from invent

inventor noun

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Comments on invent

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


one that holds something together

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