to lay on or set as something to be borne, endured, obeyed, fulfilled, paid, etc.: to impose taxes.
to put or set by or as if by authority: to impose one's personal preference on others.
to obtrude or thrust (oneself, one's company, etc.) upon others.
to pass or palm off fraudulently or deceptively: He imposed his pretentious books on the public.
Printing. to lay (type pages, plates, etc.) in proper order on an imposing stone or the like and secure in a chase for printing.
to lay on or inflict, as a penalty.
Archaic. to put or place on something, or in a particular place.
Obsolete. to lay on (the hands) ceremonially, as in confirmation or ordination.
to make an impression on the mind; impose one's or its authority or influence.
to obtrude oneself or one's requirements, as upon others: Are you sure my request doesn't impose?
to presume, as upon patience or good nature.
- im·pos·a·ble, adjective
- im·pos·er, noun
- o·ver·im·pose, verb (used with object), o·ver·im·posed, o·ver·im·pos·ing.
- pre·im·pose, verb (used with object), pre·im·posed, pre·im·pos·ing.
- re·im·pose, verb, re·im·posed, re·im·pos·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use impose in a sentence
As long as they abide by their own internal rules of governance, the secular society imposes no meddling restrictions.A Victory for ‘Religious Freedom’ is a Loss for Religion | Gene Robinson | June 8, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Designing homes with solar as a standard imposes some burdens on developers.Solar Panels Now Being Offered as a Prebuilt Feature in California | Daniel Gross | May 20, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Because of the obligation to make reparation that a crime against humanity always imposes.Bernard-Henri Lévy: Yes, France Is To Blame For Rwanda | Bernard-Henri Lévy | April 24, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Whatʼs more, the solar-produced electricity that floods into the system from homes during the day also imposes costs.
The shame that society imposes on sex workers does only one thing: hurts sex workers.Duke's Freshman Porn Starlet Isn't Ashamed—and She Shouldn't Be | Emily Shire | February 24, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Its acceptance by the garageman imposes on him the duty of exercising due care for its safety and protection.Putnam's Handy Law Book for the Layman | Albert Sidney Bolles
An agreement to keep it in good repair imposes an obligation on the landlord's part to rebuild.Putnam's Handy Law Book for the Layman | Albert Sidney Bolles
This is proved to us by the weight which the air imposes upon the mercury at the open end of a barometric tube.Outlines of the Earth's History | Nathaniel Southgate Shaler
In the seas the fluid has an exceeding freedom of motion; it can obey the varied impulses which the solar energy imposes upon it.Outlines of the Earth's History | Nathaniel Southgate Shaler
It is pretended that even if it should be a fiction, it is advantageous, because it imposes upon men and leads them to virtue.Superstition In All Ages (1732) | Jean Meslier
British Dictionary definitions for impose
(tr) to establish as something to be obeyed or complied with; enforce: to impose a tax on the people
to force (oneself, one's presence, etc) on another or others; obtrude
(intr) to take advantage, as of a person or quality: to impose on someone's kindness
(tr) printing to arrange pages so that after printing and folding the pages will be in the correct order
(tr) to pass off deceptively; foist: to impose a hoax on someone
(tr) (of a bishop or priest) to lay (the hands) on the head of a candidate for certain sacraments
- imposable, adjective
- imposer, 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