• synonyms


[verb im-preg-neyt, im-preg-neyt; adjective im-preg-nit, -neyt]
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verb (used with object), im·preg·nat·ed, im·preg·nat·ing.
  1. to make pregnant; get with child or young.
  2. to fertilize.
  3. to cause to be infused or permeated throughout, as with a substance; saturate: to impregnate a handkerchief with cheap perfume.
  4. to fill interstices with a substance.
  5. to furnish with some actuating or modifying element infused or introduced; imbue, infect; tincture.
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  1. impregnated.
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Origin of impregnate

1535–45; < Late Latin impraegnātus past participle of impraegnāre to fertilize, impregnate, equivalent to im- im-1 + praegn- (see pregnant1) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsim·preg·na·tion, nounim·preg·na·tor, nounim·preg·na·to·ry [im-preg-nuh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ɪmˈprɛg nəˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/, adjectivenon·im·preg·nat·ed, adjectivere·im·preg·nate, verb (used with object), re·im·preg·nat·ed, re·im·preg·nat·ing.re·im·preg·na·tion, nounself-im·preg·nat·ed, adjectiveself-im·preg·nat·ing, adjectiveself-im·preg·na·tion, nounself-im·preg·na·tor, nounun·im·preg·nat·ed, adjective


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for impregnation

Historical Examples

  • She, indeed, created him, his sole function being her impregnation.

    The Truth About Woman

    C. Gasquoine Hartley

  • I return to his discoveries on the impregnation of the Queen Bee.

  • Then we still have some time before the impregnation ceremony?

    Mother America

    Sam McClatchie

  • The process of fertilization or fecundation is also known as impregnation and conception.


    William J. Robinson

  • Impregnation with this precaution might occur, but it would be rare.

British Dictionary definitions for impregnation


verb (ˈɪmprɛɡˌneɪt) (tr)
  1. to saturate, soak, or infuseto impregnate a cloth with detergent
  2. to imbue or permeate; pervade
  3. to cause to conceive; make pregnant
  4. to fertilize (an ovum)
  5. to make (land, soil, etc) fruitful
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adjective (ɪmˈprɛɡnɪt, -ˌneɪt)
  1. pregnant or fertilized
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Derived Formsimpregnation, nounimpregnator, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Late Latin impraegnāre to make pregnant, from Latin im- in- ² + praegnans pregnant
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 impregnation


late 14c., "making or becoming pregnant," from Old French impregnacion, from Late Latin impregnationem (nominative impregnatio), from impraegnare (see impregnate).

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c.1600, from Late Latin impraegnatus "pregnant," past participle of impraegnare "to render pregnant," from assimilated form of in- "into, in" (see in- (2)) + praegnare "make pregnant" (see pregnant). Earlier in same sense was impregn (1530s).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

impregnation in Medicine


  1. To make pregnant; to cause to conceive; inseminate.
  2. To fertilize an ovum.
  3. To fill throughout; saturate.
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Related formsim′preg•nation n.im•pregna′tor n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.