impossible

EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Middle English impossible

PronunciationEdit

  • (UK) IPA(key): /ɪmˈpɒs.ɪ.bəl/, /ɪmˈpɒs.ə.bəl/
  • (US) IPA(key): /ɪmˈpɑ.sə.bl̩/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: im‧pos‧si‧ble

AdjectiveEdit

impossible (not generally comparable, comparative more impossible, superlative most impossible)

  1. Not possible; not able to be done or happen.
    It is difficult, if not impossible, to memorize 20,000 consecutive numbers.
    Sarah thinks that nothing is impossible because things can always somehow happen.
  2. (colloquial, of a person) Very difficult to deal with.
    You never listen to a word I say – you're impossible!
    2006, Amanda Palmer (lyrics and music), “Delilah”, in Yes, Virginia..., performed by The Dresden Dolls:
    I never met a more impossible girl.
  3. (mathematics, dated) imaginary
    impossible quantities, or imaginary numbers

SynonymsEdit

AntonymsEdit

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

NounEdit

impossible (plural impossibles)

  1. An impossibility.
    • 1888 November, Joseph Le Conte, “The Problem of a Flying-Machine”, in The Popular Science Monthly, volume 34, page 70:
      In fact, to most people, the real impossibles do not seem impossible, or wonderful, or even difficult at all.
    • 1890, Jean Kate Ludlum, At Brown's: An Adirondack Story, page 15:
      “Ye can't expect impossibles, and Jim hadn't no idee o' takin' yer trunk along of him in ther buggy when he kem hyar this mornin'.
    • 1903, Jonathan Brierley, Problems of Living, page 16:
      For one thing, the Gospel's moral impossibles appear, in this light, not as an objection to Christianity, but as one of its most striking evidences.
    • 1911, J. H. Jowett, “Turning Back”, in Homiletic Review, volume 61, page 392:
      Yes, the church lives for impossibles, and she lives by impossibles, and if she shrinks from impossibles her own vigor will shrink and die.
    • 2000, Kenneth D. Keith, ‎Robert L. Schalock, Cross-cultural Perspectives on Quality of Life, page 292:
      Aristotle (1952), in his Nicomachean Ethics, described the relation between will and choice: a Choice cannot relate to impossibles, and if anyone said he chose them he would be thought silly;
    • 2010, The Journal of Parliamentary Information - Volume 56, page 20:
      Dreams are made out of impossibles. We cannot reach the impossibles by using the analytical minds which are trained to deal with hard information which is currently available.
  2. A skateboard trick consisting of a backflip performed in midair.

TranslationsEdit


CatalanEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Latin impossibilis, equivalent to in- +‎ possible.

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

impossible (masculine and feminine plural impossibles)

  1. impossible
    Antonym: possible

Derived termsEdit

Related termsEdit

Further readingEdit


FrenchEdit

EtymologyEdit

From im- +‎ possible.

PronunciationEdit

AdjectiveEdit

impossible (plural impossibles)

  1. impossible

Derived termsEdit

Further readingEdit


Middle EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

From Old French impossible, from Latin impossibilis, from in- (not) + possibilis (possible)

AdjectiveEdit

impossible

  1. impossible

Middle FrenchEdit

AdjectiveEdit

impossible m or f (plural impossibles)

  1. impossible