From Middle English inventen, borrowed from Old French inventer, from Latin inventus, perfect passive participle of inveniō (“come upon, meet with, find, discover”), from in (“in, on”) + veniō (“come”); see venture. Compare advent, covent, event, prevent, etc.
invent (third-person singular simple present invents, present participle inventing, simple past and past participle invented)
- To design a new process or mechanism.
- After weeks of hard work, I invented a new way to alphabetize matchbooks.
- To create something fictional for a particular purpose.
- I knew I had to invent an excuse, and quickly.
- We need a name to put in this form, so let's just invent one.
- Synonyms: make up
- (obsolete) To come upon; to find; to discover.
- 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, I.vi:
- Far off he wonders, what them makes so glad, / If Bacchus merry fruit they did inuent [...].
design a new process or mechanism
create something fictional
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