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90s Slang You Should Know


[im-priz-uh n] /ɪmˈprɪz ən/
verb (used with object)
to confine in or as if in a prison.
Origin of imprison
1250-1300; Middle English enprisonen < Old French enprisoner, equivalent to en- en-1 + prison prison + -er infinitive suffix
Related forms
imprisonable, adjective
imprisoner, noun
imprisonment, noun
reimprison, verb (used with object)
reimprisonment, noun
unimprisonable, adjective
unimprisoned, adjective
incarcerate, jail, restrain. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for imprison
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • imprison him as a criminal, and I affirm to you that he will be lost.

  • I should not advise you to imprison them together—they would fight.

    The Regent's Daughter Alexandre Dumas (Pere)
  • You began to imprison your nobles, in order to fill your rooms with their wives and daughters, but of this also you have tired.

    The Story of Moscow Wirt Gerrare
  • A duke can not presume to imprison a king; that duty belongs to an emperor.

    Richard I Jacob Abbott
  • The Judge and Jury were of opinion that he had no right to beat or imprison the negro.

    Dealings with the Dead, Volume I (of 2) A Sexton of the Old School
British Dictionary definitions for imprison


(transitive) to confine in or as if in prison
Derived Forms
imprisoner, noun
imprisonment, noun
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 imprison

c.1300, from Old French emprisoner (12c.), from em- "in" (see in- (2)) + prison (see prison). Related: Imprisoned; imprisoning.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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