im·​age | \ ˈi-mij How to pronounce image (audio) \

Definition of image

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a visual representation of something: such as
(1) : a likeness of an object produced on a photographic material
(2) : a picture produced on an electronic display (such as a television or computer screen)
b : the optical counterpart of an object produced by an optical device (such as a lens or mirror) or an electronic device
2a(1) : a mental picture or impression of something had a negative body image of herself
(2) : a mental conception held in common by members of a group and symbolic of a basic attitude and orientation a disorderly courtroom can seriously tarnish a community's image of justice— Herbert Brownell
b : idea, concept
3 : a popular conception (as of a person, institution, or nation) projected especially through the mass media promoting a corporate image of brotherly love and concern— R. C. Buck
4a : exact likeness : semblance God created man in his own image — Genesis 1:27 (Revised Standard Version)
b : a person strikingly like another person she is the image of her mother
5a : a tangible or visible representation : incarnation the image of filial devotion
b archaic : an illusory form : apparition
6 : a vivid or graphic representation or description
7 : a reproduction or imitation of the form of a person or thing especially : an imitation in solid form : statue
9 : a set of values given by a mathematical function (such as a homomorphism) that corresponds to a particular subset of the domain


imaged; imaging

Definition of image (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to create a representation of also : to form an image of imaged Jupiter's rings image the bone using X-rays
b : to represent symbolically
2 : to call up a mental picture of : imagine
3 : to describe or portray in language especially in a vivid manner
4a : reflect, mirror
b : to make appear : project
5 : to make a disk image of Many computer forensics programs now include the option of imaging a suspect drive.— Yvonne Jewkes

Other Words from image


imager \ ˈi-​mi-​jər How to pronounce image (audio) \ noun

Examples of image in a Sentence

Noun She studied her image in the mirror. The kids sat staring at the images on the TV screen. painters capturing images of war black-and-white images of the city His poem evokes images of the sea and warm summer days. He is trying hard to improve his image. The law suit has negatively affected the company's public image. a politician who cares more about image than about telling the truth Verb in the painting Sacagawea is imaged as an intrepid woman pointing the way for Lewis and Clark the brochure images a vacation at the resort in language that makes you want to make a reservation this instant See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In May 2017, Seth and Lauren showed off their humor by comparing an image of them to a very similar photo of Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel. Meg Walters, Peoplemag, 8 Aug. 2022 Before that meeting, Xi will be keen to project an image of strength at home and abroad, particularly on the question of Taiwan. Mike Ives,, 8 Aug. 2022 The knife — a clip-point blade with some type of military seal and an image of an assault rifle etched onto the handle — was retrieved from Kelley at the scene of the crime, investigators said. Wendy Fry, San Diego Union-Tribune, 8 Aug. 2022 Nichole Schmidt, her mother, used an image of a very young Petito as her avatar for the call. Fox News, 8 Aug. 2022 Though a release date has yet to be announced, John confirmed the collab, sharing an image of the single artwork, which features a simple rocket emoji and a red rose, symbols used by each of the artists. Tomás Mier, Rolling Stone, 8 Aug. 2022 If there are any maker’s marks, please include an image of those. oregonlive, 6 Aug. 2022 A few hundred meters down the road, a competitor had affixed an image of a beach umbrella with dangling stars to the front door. Rick Noack, Washington Post, 5 Aug. 2022 Now, Arbi has revealed an image of what that meeting would have looked like on screen. Nick Romano,, 5 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To image different body systems, Zhao’s team tested versions of the probe that produce waves at different frequencies and thus penetrate the body to different depths. Sophie Bushwick, Scientific American, 29 July 2022 The telescope’s infrared cameras were able to image hundreds of previously unseen young stars within the nebula, which is about 8,500 light years away. Michael Kan, PCMAG, 12 July 2022 The telescope will also image a pair of galaxy clusters, including Stephan’s Quintet, a grouping of five galaxies that astronomers originally discovered during the 19th century. Michael Kan, PCMAG, 12 July 2022 The company’s satellites have a resolution of around 9 feet, a measure of the level of detail the sensors can image, and can spot changes on the ground. Robert Wall, WSJ, 1 May 2022 Telescopes in the millimetre-wavelength range can image the event horizon of a black hole, says project manager Marc Klein Wolt, who is also managing director of the Radboud Radio Lab at Radboud University. Sarah Wild, Scientific American, 9 Feb. 2022 The team was able to image the umbilical scar, which had faded over time, by seeing a change in the pattern of skin and scales where the dino’s belly button would be. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 13 June 2022 These longer, redder wavelengths than visible light means Webb can image clouds of gas and pierce through the dust that obscures, for example, the inner regions of most nebulae and a lot of stars in both our own and distant galaxies. Jamie Carter, Forbes, 11 June 2022 Similar laser technology was used by the National Park Service to image brown bears in Katmai National Park for Fat Bear Week, giving Mangipane and her colleagues the idea to adapt the laser imaging system to other bears in the wild. oregonlive, 3 June 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of image


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 7


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for image


Middle English, "effigy, figure, mental impression of something observed, reflection, resemblance," borrowed from Anglo-French, shortened from imagene, borrowed from Latin imāgin-, imāgō "representation, reflection, apparition, semblance, copy, visible form," from imā- (probably the stem of an otherwise unattested verb *imārī with the same base as imitārī "to follow as a pattern, copy") + -gin-, -gō, denominal or deverbal noun suffix — more at imitate


Middle English imagen, in part derivative of image image entry 1, in part borrowed from Middle French ymagier "to imagine," derivative of image

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The first known use of image was in the 13th century

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image dissector

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Last Updated

12 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Image.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for image


im·​age | \ ˈi-mij How to pronounce image (audio) \

Kids Definition of image

1 : a picture or reflection of something produced by a device (as a mirror or lens) We watched the images on the screen.
2 : someone who looks very much like another She is the image of her mother.
3 : the thought of how something looks An image appeared in his head of his parents hugging each other and crying.— Louis Sachar, Holes
4 : a representation (as a picture or statue) of something
5 : an idea of what someone or something is like He has an image as a troublemaker.


im·​age | \ ˈim-ij How to pronounce image (audio) \

Medical Definition of image

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the optical counterpart of an object produced by an optical device (as a lens or mirror) or an electronic device — see real image, virtual image
b : a likeness of an object produced on a photographic material
2 : a mental picture or impression of something had a negative body image of herself : as
a(1) : a mental conception held in common by members of a group and symbolic of a basic attitude and orientation the compassionate small-town family doctor, an image that the AMA deeply admiresCurrent Biography
(2) : an idealized conception of a person and especially a parent that is formed by an infant or child, is retained in the unconscious, and influences behavior in later life the overwhelming influence of the mother image— John Messenger

called also imago

b : the memory of a perception in psychology that is modified by subsequent experience also : the representation of the source of a stimulus on a receptor mechanism


imaged; imaging

Medical Definition of image (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to call up a mental picture of : imagine
2 : to create a representation of also : to form an image of the liver was imaged the animals were anesthetized and imaged with a gamma camera — R. T. Proffitt et al.

intransitive verb

: to form an image

More from Merriam-Webster on image

Nglish: Translation of image for Spanish Speakers

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


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