View synonyms for imagine


[ ih-maj-in ]

verb (used with object)

, im·ag·ined, im·ag·in·ing.
  1. to form a mental image of (something not actually present to the senses).

    Synonyms: picture, image

  2. to think, believe, or fancy:

    He imagined the house was haunted.

  3. to assume; suppose:

    I imagine they'll be here soon.

  4. to conjecture; guess:

    I cannot imagine what you mean.

  5. Archaic. to plan, scheme, or plot.

verb (used without object)

, im·ag·ined, im·ag·in·ing.
  1. to form mental images of things not present to the senses; use the imagination.
  2. to suppose; think; conjecture.


/ ɪˈmædʒɪn /


  1. when tr, may take a clause as object to form a mental image of
  2. when tr, may take a clause as object to think, believe, or guess
  3. tr; takes a clause as object to suppose; assume

    I imagine he'll come

  4. tr; takes a clause as object to believe or assume without foundation

    he imagines he knows the whole story

  5. an archaic word for plot 1

sentence substitute

  1. Alsoimagine that! an exclamation of surprise

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Derived Forms

  • imˈaginable, adjective
  • imˈaginer, noun
  • imˈaginably, adverb

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Other Words From

  • i·magin·er noun
  • preim·agine verb (used with object) preimagined preimagining
  • rei·magine verb (used with object) reimagined reimagining
  • unim·agined adjective
  • well-i·magined adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of imagine1

First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English imaginen from Middle French imaginer from Latin imāginārī, equivalent to imāgin- (stem of imāgō ) image + -ā- thematic vowel + -rī infinitive ending

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Word History and Origins

Origin of imagine1

C14: from Latin imāginārī to fancy, picture mentally, from imāgō likeness; see image

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Synonym Study

Imagine, conceive, conceive of, realize refer to bringing something before the mind. To imagine is, literally, to form a mental image of something: to imagine yourself in London. To conceive is to form something by using one's imagination: How has the author conceived the first act of his play? To conceive of is to comprehend through the intellect something not perceived through the senses: Wilson conceived of a world free from war. To realize is to make an imagined thing real or concrete to oneself, to grasp fully its implications: to realize the extent of one's folly.

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Example Sentences

“You can imagine the sound of that gun on a Bronx street,” Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce says.

Imagine waking up to find a guy who looks like a tech startup employee eating your charred crispy leg.

If you think divorce between two people is messy and traumatic, imagine divorcing yourself.

Imagine living 28 years—your whole life—trapped inside the wrong body.

Now imagine that one day hope appeared, an unexpected opportunity to free yourself, to finally be yourself.

I would ask you to imagine it translated into every language, a common material of understanding throughout all the world.

And furthermore, I imagine something else about this—quite unlike the old Bible—I imagine all of it periodically revised.

You may imagine the effect this missive produced upon the proud, high-minded doctor of divinity.

We can imagine that, as soon as a printed book ceased to be a great rarity, it became an object of great abhorrence.

I thought you said Meadowville, and never havin' been there, I didn't see how I could imagine the station.