not prudent; lacking discretion; incautious; rash.

Origin of imprudent

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin imprūdent- (stem of imprūdēns) unforeseeing, rash. See im-2, prudent
Related formsim·pru·dence, im·pru·dent·ness, im·pru·den·cy, nounim·pru·dent·ly, adverb
Can be confusedimprudent impudent

Synonyms for imprudent Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for imprudence

carelessness, neglect, foolishness, recklessness

Examples from the Web for imprudence

Historical Examples of imprudence

  • Once the ordeal is over, we shall be at ease as to the consequences of our imprudence.

    Therese Raquin

    Emile Zola

  • In a gruff, rude voice, he chided him for his imprudence, and told him to go in.

    Gerald Fitzgerald

    Charles James Lever

  • I wish that I could suffer alone for my self-will and imprudence.

  • I am not the man to reproach anyone on the score of imprudence.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • But it was in vain that he argued, pleaded, raged, finally—imprudence of imprudence!

    The Genius

    Margaret Horton Potter

British Dictionary definitions for imprudence



not prudent; rash, heedless, or indiscreet
Derived Formsimprudence, nounimprudently, adverb
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 imprudence

early 15c., "quality of rashness or heedlessness; imprudent act," from Latin imprudentia "lack of foresight, inconsiderateness, ignorance, inadvertence," noun of quality from imprudens (see imprudent).



late 14c., from Latin imprudentem (nominative imprudens) "not foreseeing, unaware, inconsiderate, heedless," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + prudens, contraction of providens, present participle of providere "to provide," literally "to see before (one)" (see provide). Related: Imprudently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper