the imperfect


: the form of a verb used to express an incomplete action in the past or a state that continued for a period of time in the past
In "He was singing when I came in," "was singing" is in the imperfect.

Dictionary Entries Near the imperfect

Cite this Entry

“The imperfect.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2024.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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