- a position or situation from which there is no escape; deadlock.
- a road or way that has no outlet; cul-de-sac.
Origin of impasse
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for impasse
And a coup probably would exacerbate the economic problems that months of friction, violence and impasse have wrought.Thailand’s Non-Coup Coup
May 21, 2014
And Kerry said that both Israeli and Palestinian leaders share the blame for the current impasse in the talks.Exclusive: Kerry Warns Israel Could Become ‘An Apartheid State’
April 27, 2014
We believe that we may be close to such an impasse, and we want to present the Commandant with options.Gagging the Corps: A Marine Commandant’s War on Newsprint
February 26, 2014
For now, an impasse holds Ukraine in a limbo punctuated by violent outbursts.Up to Speed: What’s Going on in Ukraine?
February 19, 2014
In the meantime, expect attitudes to harden—and the country to remain at impasse.Grenade Attack Hits Downtown Bangkok
January 19, 2014
"I live at the end of the Impasse des Bourdonnais," he said rapidly.The Fat and the Thin
According to them, the investigation into the activities of that ship had come to an impasse.Space Viking
Henry Beam Piper
"Seems to be an impasse, Mr. Cornell," he said with an amused smile.Highways in Hiding
George Oliver Smith
He got round the impasse by kicking out the foot rest of the third chair.The Pagan Madonna
Here was an impasse from which obviously there was but one method of extrication.Lord Milner's Work in South Africa
W. Basil Worsfold
- a situation in which progress is blocked; an insurmountable difficulty; stalemate; deadlock
Word Origin and History for impasse
1851, "blind alley," from French impasse "impassable road, blind alley, impasse," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + Middle French passe "a passing," from passer "to pass" (see pass (v.)). Supposedly coined by Voltaire as a euphemism for cul de sac. Figurative use also from 1851.