invent

verb
in·​vent | \ in-ˈvent How to pronounce invent (audio) \
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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from invent

inventor \ in-​ˈven-​tər How to pronounce inventor (audio) \ noun
inventress \ in-​ˈven-​trəs How to pronounce inventress (audio) \ 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.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The island’s oldest known pub claims to have invented Bermuda’s signature drink, the rum swizzle, which is made with Gosling’s rum, Triple sec, bitters and fruit juices. Kelly Vaughan, courant.com, "Bermuda i n 72 hours: Yes, really," 17 Sep. 2019 But, like any way of dressing, layering had to be invented. Rachel S. Gross, The Atlantic, "The Military Origins of Layering," 15 Sep. 2019 By simplifying the retrofit process, reducing the number of pipes to cut and reroute, as well as not having to invent a new vent strategy, the EZ 98 speeds the new installation and reduces hookup costs. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "Why Your Next Water Heater Should Be Tankless," 14 Aug. 2019 The researchers, Limor Raviv, Antje Meyer and Shiri Lev-Ari, asked 12 groups of four strangers and 12 groups of eight to invent languages to describe a group of moving shapes on the screen. The Economist, "Why widely spoken languages have simpler grammar," 8 Aug. 2019 But even before his trip, Smith's restlessness with language prompted him to invent a new name for himself. John Schmid, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "This veteran sports psychologist has worked with the Packers and Bucks. Now he's speaking up about racism," 16 July 2019 Rather than forgo the taste of real cheese and dairy for poor vegan substitutes, the pair decided to invent their own version of the real thing. Larissa Zimberoff, latimes.com, "Here comes lab-grown dairy: milk proteins made without animals," 11 July 2019 This ship proved to be leaky, and Archimedes had to invent a device to remove water from it. Ben Finio, Scientific American, "Lift Water with an Archimedes Screw," 11 July 2019 Some judges, wary of fraud, say that future plans are easy to invent and hard to prove. Dov Fox, Vox, "The legal limbo of lost embryos," 3 July 2019

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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about invent

Statistics for invent

Last Updated

7 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for invent

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for invent

invent

verb

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

invent

verb
in·​vent | \ in-ˈvent How to pronounce invent (audio) \
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
in·​vent

Legal Definition of invent

: to create or produce for the first time

Other Words from invent

inventor noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on invent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with invent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for invent

Spanish Central: Translation of invent

Nglish: Translation of invent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of invent for Arabic Speakers

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).

WORD OF THE DAY

to wander slowly or to speak indistinctly

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!