1
as in enormous
unusually large the elephant was simply immense, even as elephants go

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2
as in great
of the very best kind we had simply an immense time at the luxury resort

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How is the word immense distinct from other similar adjectives?

Some common synonyms of immense are colossal, enormous, gigantic, huge, mammoth, and vast. While all these words mean "exceedingly large," enormous and immense both suggest an exceeding of all ordinary bounds in size or amount or degree, but enormous often adds an implication of abnormality or monstrousness.

an enormous expense
an immense shopping mall

When might colossal be a better fit than immense?

Although the words colossal and immense have much in common, colossal applies especially to a human creation of stupendous or incredible dimensions.

a colossal statue of Lincoln

When can gigantic be used instead of immense?

While in some cases nearly identical to immense, gigantic stresses the contrast with the size of others of the same kind.

a gigantic sports stadium

When is huge a more appropriate choice than immense?

While the synonyms huge and immense are close in meaning, huge commonly suggests an immensity of bulk or amount.

incurred a huge debt

Where would mammoth be a reasonable alternative to immense?

The words mammoth and immense can be used in similar contexts, but mammoth suggests both hugeness and ponderousness of bulk.

a mammoth boulder

When could vast be used to replace immense?

The words vast and immense are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, vast usually suggests immensity of extent.

the vast Russian steppes

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Cite this Entry

“Immense.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/immense. Accessed 7 Dec. 2022.

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