in·​vis·​i·​ble | \ (ˌ)in-ˈvi-zə-bəl How to pronounce invisible (audio) \

Definition of invisible

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : incapable by nature of being seen : not perceptible by vision a movie about an invisible man invisible ultraviolet light
b : inaccessible to view : hidden an invisible hinge also : not marked by outward signs an invisible illness
c : not openly acknowledged or made known Had I offended him? Did I cross an invisible line?— Denis Wilson There are still invisible barriers and glass ceilings which discourage women from studying STEM fields …Forbes (online)
d : not able to be recognized or identified an invisible enemy/threat … deepened their belief that invisible forces were out to control them …— Luke Mogelson
2 : of such small size or unobtrusive quality as to be hardly noticeable : inconspicuous an invisible scar … offering consumers invisible braces that can straighten their smiles in a matter of months without them having to visit the orthodontist …— Danielle Jackson
3 : not noticed or acknowledged : treated as if invisible : overlooked To now dominate in an industry that a year ago I was invisible in … is something I unapologetically take great pride in.— Fallon Gregory … highlighting the narratives of society's most underserved and invisible groups.— Kevin Varzandeh
4a : not appearing in published financial statements invisible assets
b : not reflected in statistics Teaching English to foreign visitors is estimated to be Britain's sixth largest invisible export …The Economist


plural invisibles

Definition of invisible (Entry 2 of 2)

: an invisible person or thing : someone or something that cannot be seen or perceived … the significant aspect of his reign, its failure of concern for the religious crisis, has been overlooked as the invisibles of history usually are.— Barbara W. Tuchman "There are too many invisibles in the ad business. It depends too much on intangible relationships and chemistry."— Helen Ver Standig

Other Words from invisible


invisibility \ (ˌ)in-​ˌvi-​zə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce invisible (audio) \ noun
invisibleness \ (ˌ)in-​ˈvi-​zə-​bəl-​nəs How to pronounce invisible (audio) \ noun
invisibly \ (ˌ)in-​ˈvi-​zə-​blē How to pronounce invisible (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for invisible

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of invisible in a Sentence

Adjective a thriller about an invisible man With the telescope we can see details of the planet's surface that are ordinarily invisible. She feels as if her success is being blocked by an invisible barrier. Homelessness is no longer an invisible problem for this city.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Stapleton was for years a successful songwriter, invisible to all those but the few who knew him as a big-voiced anchor in a bluegrass band - the Steeldrivers. Andrew Dansby, Houston Chronicle, 25 Oct. 2017 Jim Schwartz smacked Jim Harbaugh, Rod Marinelli believed in the invisible and Bobby Ross didn’t coach that stuff and up and quit. Carlos Monarrez, Detroit Free Press, 14 Oct. 2017 The online bombardment, which former Clinton aides acknowledged surpassed their Facebook spending, was largely invisible to the media and the electorate. Alaska Dispatch News, 9 Oct. 2017 But Patterson worries every day about his players becoming invisible. Andy Staples,, 4 Oct. 2017 By keeping Alex’s face invisible, the play never allows its central tension to break. Jen Gann, The Cut, 3 Oct. 2017 This is particularly hard on the young up-and-comers who are largely invisible to potential sponsors. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, 28 Sep. 2017 The center of this particular universe is, for the moment, invisible to the naked eye. Chris Jones, Esquire, 28 Sep. 2017 The moral controversies surrounding Russia, Trumpcare, immigration or white supremacy that have easily turned Trump into perhaps the least popular president of all time are mostly made invisible if one only measures the world in units of money. Eli Cook, Time, 28 Sep. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'invisible.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of invisible


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1635, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for invisible


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin invisibilis, from in- + visibilis visible

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Time Traveler for invisible

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near invisible



invisible church

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Statistics for invisible

Cite this Entry

“Invisible.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for invisible


in·​vis·​i·​ble | \ in-ˈvi-zə-bəl How to pronounce invisible (audio) \

Kids Definition of invisible

: impossible to see Sound waves are invisible.

Other Words from invisible

invisibly \ -​blē \ adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on invisible

Nglish: Translation of invisible for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of invisible for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about invisible


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