See more synonyms for impassive on

Origin of impassive

First recorded in 1660–70; im-2 + passive
Related formsim·pas·sive·ly, adverbim·pas·sive·ness, im·pas·siv·i·ty [im-pa-siv-i-tee] /ˌɪm pæˈsɪv ɪ ti/, noun

Synonyms for impassive

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for impassive

Contemporary Examples of impassive

Historical Examples of impassive

  • When the Inspector took thought to look at her, she was as impassive as before.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • "Come along," said the impassive Stoliker, taking the handcuffs from his pocket.

  • Outwardly he maintained consistently a pose of impassive gullibility.

    The Black Bag

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • In the boat the man with the bailing can turned up an impassive countenance.

    The Black Bag

    Louis Joseph Vance

  • I looked at the impassive face of the spokesman with the wand.

British Dictionary definitions for impassive


  1. not revealing or affected by emotion; reserved
  2. calm; serene; imperturbable
  3. rare unconscious or insensible
Derived Formsimpassively, adverbimpassiveness or impassivity (ˌɪmpæˈsɪvɪtɪ), 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

Word Origin and History for impassive

1660s, "not feeling pain," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + passive. Meaning "void of emotions" is from 1690s. Related: Impassively; impassiveness (1640s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper