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[im-pinj] /ɪmˈpɪndʒ/
verb (used without object), impinged, impinging.
to make an impression; have an effect or impact (usually followed by on or upon):
to impinge upon the imagination; social pressures that impinge upon one's daily life.
to encroach; infringe (usually followed by on or upon):
to impinge on another's rights.
to strike; dash; collide (usually followed by on, upon, or against):
rays of light impinging on the eye.
verb (used with object), impinged, impinging.
Obsolete. to come into violent contact with.
Origin of impinge
1525-35; < Medieval Latin impingere to strike against, drive at, equivalent to Latin im- im-1 + -pingere, combining form of pangere to fasten, drive in, fix; see impact
Related forms
impingent, adjective
impinger, noun
impingement, noun
unimpinging, adjective
Can be confused
infringe, impinge. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for impinged
Historical Examples
  • Bullets whizzed through the 'plane, and one or two impinged on the engine.

    The Sequel George A. Taylor
  • The corner of the raft had impinged against some ice that was piled on the beach.

    Klondike Nuggets E. S. Ellis
  • I knew all the symptoms so well—the things he had 'in him,' and the things outside him that impinged!

    Tales Of Men And Ghosts Edith Wharton
  • That was the lady's hand, flat open, impinged on the speaker's cheek.

    Bulldog Carney W. A. Fraser
  • It was revealed in many ways, but impinged upon the new President in only one.

    Lincoln Nathaniel Wright Stephenson
  • Not for many nights had the past impinged so closely upon the present.

    The Rainbow Trail Zane Grey
  • A wholesale unsettling of habit is seen when a lower culture is impinged upon by a higher.

    Sex and Society

    William I. Thomas
  • The garden had even trespassed its bounds, and impinged upon the open road, the deserted claims, and the ruins of the past.

  • Then suddenly a ray of light stabbed through the darkness and impinged on his head-casque—white, electric, man-made light!

    Seed of the Arctic Ice H. G. Winter
  • The Germans now became a menace on the borders of the wood, where they impinged on a number of awkward pockets or little salients.

British Dictionary definitions for impinged


(intransitive; usually foll by on or upon) to encroach or infringe; trespass: to impinge on someone's time
(intransitive; usually foll by on, against, or upon) to collide (with); strike
Derived Forms
impingement, noun
impinger, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin impingere to drive at, dash against, from pangere to fasten, drive in
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for impinged



1530s, "fasten or fix forcibly," from Latin impingere "drive into, strike against," from assimilated form of in- "into, in, on, upon" (see in- (2)) + pangere "to fix, fasten" (see pact). Sense of "encroach, infringe" first recorded 1738. Related: Impinged; impinging.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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