- of, relating to, or characterized by sudden or rash action, emotion, etc.; impulsive: an impetuous decision; an impetuous person.
- having great impetus; moving with great force; violent: the impetuous winds.
Origin of impetuous
SynonymsSee more synonyms for impetuous on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for impetuous
The old Kaiser Franz Joseph, faithful and hardworking, was the obverse of the feckless and impetuous German kaiser.Before the Fall: What Did the World Look Like in 1913?
June 9, 2013
Zakir is a fearless and impetuous fighter, a former Guantanamo prisoner who earned a reputation for brutality on the battlefield.Afghanistan: Will the Taliban Destroy Itself?
December 17, 2012
Referring to his numerous divorces, he writes, "I was young, impetuous, and lonely."The Daily Beast Recommends
The Daily Beast
May 19, 2009
"It is a great deal worse to drive without her," said the impetuous lady.
Then, indeed, she had burst upon him with an impetuous despair that had alarmed him.
At the impetuous outflinging of her hands, the floor was strewn with pink petals.The Bacillus of Beauty
He was an impetuous leader; but he was skilful too; he never lost his head.The Boy Life of Napoleon
Another minute, and impetuous Tom would have burst the window in.The Channings
Mrs. Henry Wood
- liable to act without consideration; rash; impulsive
- resulting from or characterized by rashness or haste
- poetic moving with great force or violence; rushingthe impetuous stream hurtled down the valley
Word Origin and History for impetuous
late 14c., "hot-tempered, fierce," from Old French impetuos (13c.) and directly from Late Latin impetuosus "impetuous, violent," from Latin impetus "attack" (see impetus). Related: Impetuously; impetuousness.