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See more synonyms for imagine on Thesaurus.com
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).
  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.
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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.
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Origin of imagine

1300–50; Middle English imaginen < Middle French imaginer < Latin imāginārī, equivalent to imāgin- (stem of imāgō) image + -ā- thematic vowel + -rī infinitive ending
Related formsi·mag·in·er, nounpre·im·ag·ine, verb (used with object), pre·im·ag·ined, pre·im·ag·in·ing.re·i·mag·ine, verb (used with object), re·i·mag·ined, re·i·mag·in·ing.un·im·ag·ined, adjectivewell-i·mag·ined, adjective

Synonyms for imagine

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. image, picture. 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.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for imagine

envision, figure, devise, frame, fancy, fantasy, envisage, visualize, create, feature, scheme, image, picture, form, perceive, depict, fantasize, plan, spark, realize

Examples from the Web for imagine

Contemporary Examples of imagine

Historical Examples of imagine

  • He cannot imagine a more salutary mode of exhausting his force.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • What do you imagine you could employ yourself with down there?

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • It arose, I imagine, from an excess of the masculine element in his nature.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • "You could not imagine what occurred next," said the bright-faced teacher.

  • They won't come, to be sure; but just imagine it if they should!

British Dictionary definitions for imagine


  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; assumeI imagine he'll come
  4. (tr; takes a clause as object) to believe or assume without foundationhe imagines he knows the whole story
  5. an archaic word for plot 1
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sentence substitute
  1. Also: imagine that! an exclamation of surprise
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Derived Formsimaginable, adjectiveimaginably, adverbimaginer, noun

Word Origin for imagine

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

Word Origin and History for imagine


mid-14c., "to form a mental image of," from Old French imaginer "sculpt, carve, paint; decorate, embellish" (13c.), from Latin imaginari "to form a mental picture to oneself, imagine" (also, in Late Latin imaginare "to form an image of, represent"), from imago (see image). Sense of "suppose" is first recorded late 14c. Related: Imagined; imagining.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper