Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary



IMPROVING, ppr. Making better; growing better; using to advantage.

IMPROVISION, n. s as z. [in and provision.] Want of forecast; improvidence. [Little used.]

IMPRUDENCE, n. [L. imprudentia; in and prudentia, prudence.]

Want of prudence; indiscretion; want of caution, circumspection, or a due regard to the consequences of words to be uttered or actions to be performed, or their probable effects on the interest, safety, reputation or happiness of one’s self or others; heedlessness; inconsiderateness; rashness. Let a man of sixty attempt to enumerate the evils which his imprudence has brought on himself, his family, or his neighbors.

IMPRUDENT, a. [L. imprudens; in and prudens, prudent.]

Wanting prudence or discretion; indiscrete; injudicious; not attentive to the consequences of words or actions; rash; heedless. The imprudent man often laments his mistakes, and then repeats them.

IMPRUDENTLY, adv. Without the exercise of prudence; indiscreetly.

IMPUDENCE, n. [L. impudens; in and pudens, from pudeo, to be ashamed.] Shamelessness; want of modesty; effrontery; assurance accompanied with a disregard of the opinions of others.

Those clear truths, that either their own evidence forces us to admit, or common experience makes it impudence to deny.

IMPUDENT, a. [L. impudens.] Shameless; wanting modesty; bold with contempt of others; saucy.

When we behold an angel, not to fear

Is to be impudent.

IMPUDENTLY, adv. Shamelessly; with indecent assurance.

At once assail

With open mouths, and impudently rail.

IMPUDICITY, n. [L. impudicitia.] Immodesty.

IMPUGN, v.t. impu’ne. [L. impugno; in and pugno, to fight or resist.] To oppose; to attack by words or arguments; to contradict. The lawfulness of lots is impugned by some, and defended by others.

The truth hereof I will not rashly impugn, or over-boldly affirm.

IMPUGNATION, n. Opposition. [Little used.]

IMPUGNED, pp. Opposed; contradicted; disputed.

IMPUGNER, n. One who opposes or contradicts.

IMPUGNING, ppr. Opposing; attacking; contradicting.

IMPUISSANCE, n. Impotence; weakness.

IMPULSE, n. im’puls. [L. impulsus, from impello. See Impel.]

1. Force communicated; the effect of one body acting on another. Impulse is the effect of motion, and is in proportion to the quantity of matter and velocity of the impelling body.

2. Influence acting on the mind; motive.

These were my natural impulses for the undertaking.

3. Impression; supposed supernatural influence on the mind.

Meantime, by Jove’s impulse, Mezentius armed,

Succeeded Turnus--

IMPULSION, n. [L. impulsio. See Impel.]

1. The act of driving against or impelling; the agency of a body in motion on another body.

2. Influence on the mind; impulse.

IMPULSIVE, a. Having the power of driving or impelling; moving; impellent.

Poor men! poor papers! We and they

Do some impulsive force obey.

IMPULSIVELY, adv. With force; by impulse.

IMPUNITY, n. [L. impunitas; in and punio, to punish.]

1. Exemption from punishment or penalty. No person should be permitted to violate the laws with impunity. Impunity encourages men in crimes.

2. Freedom or exemption from injury. Some ferocious animals are not be encountered with impunity.

IMPURE, a. [L. impurus; in and purus, pure.]

1. Not pure; foul; feculent; tinctured; mixed or impregnated with extraneous substance; as impure water or air; impure salt or magnesia.

2. Obscene; as impure language or ideas.

3. Unchaste; lewd; unclean; as impure actions.

4. Defiled by sin or guilt; unholy; as persons.

5. Unhallowed; unholy; as things.

6. Unclean; in a legal sense; not purified according to the ceremonial law of Moses.

IMPURE, v.t. To render foul; to defile. [Not used.]

IMPURELY, adv. In an impure manner; with impurity.

IMPURENESS, IMPURITY, n. [L. impuritas, supra.]

1. Want of purity; foulness; feculence; the admixture of a foreign substance in any thing; as the impurity of water, of air, of spirits, or of any species of earth or metal.

2. Any foul matter.

3. Unchastity; lewdness.

The foul impurities that reigned among the monkish clergy.

4. Want of sanctity or holiness; defilement by guilt.

5. Want of ceremonial purity; legal pollution or uncleanness. By the Mosaic law, a person contracted impurity by touching a dead body or a leper.

6. Foul language; obscenity.

Profaneness, impurity, or scandal, is not wit.

IMPURPLE, v.t. [in and purple;] To color or tinge with purple; to make red or reddish; as a field impurpled with blood.

The bright

Pavement, that like a sea of jasper shone,

Impurpled; with celestial roses, smil’d.

IMPURPLING, ppr. Tinging or coloring with purple.

IMPUTABLE, a. [See Impute.] That may be imputed or charged to a person; chargeable. Thus we say, crimes, sins, errors, trespasses are imputable to those who commit them.

1. That may be ascribed to; in a good sense.

This favor is imputable to your goodness, or to a good motive.

2. Accusable; chargeable with a fault. [Not proper.]

3. That may be set to the account of another. It has been a question much agitated, whether Adam’s sin is imputable to his posterity.

IMPUTABLENESS, n. The quality of being imputable.

IMPUTATION, n. The act of imputing or charging; attribution; generally in an ill sense; as the imputation of crimes of faults to the true authors of them. We are liable to the imputation or numerous sins and errors, to the imputation of pride, vanity and self-confidence; to the imputation of weakness and irresolution, or of rashness.

1. Sometimes in a good sense.

If I had a suit to Master Shallow, I would humor his men with the imputation of being near their master.

2. Charge or attribution of evil; censure; reproach.

Let us be careful to guard ourselves against these groundless imputations of our enemies, and to rise above them.

3. Hint; slight notice.

IMPUTATIVE, a. That may be imputed.

IMPUTATIVELY, adv. By imputation.

IMPUTE, v.t. [L. imputo; in and puto, to think, to reckon; properly, to set, to put, to throw to or on.]

1. To charge; to attribute; to set to the account of; generally ill, sometimes good. We impute crimes, sins, trespasses, faults, blame, etc., to the guilty persons. We impute wrong actions to bad motives, or to ignorance, or to folly and rashness. We impute misfortunes and miscarriages to imprudence.

And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness. Romans 4:22.

2. To attribute; to ascribe.

I have read a book imputed to lord Bathurst.

3. To reckon to one what does not belong to him.

It has been held that Adam’s sin is imputed to all his posterity.

Thy merit

Imputed shall absolve them who renounce

Their own both righteous and unrighteous deeds.

IMPUTED, pp. Charged to the account of; attributed; ascribed.

IMPUTER, n. One that imputes or attributes.

IMPUTING, ppr. Charging to the account of; attributing; ascribing.

IMPUTRESCIBLE, a. [in and L. putresco, to putrefy.]

Not subject to putrefaction or corruption.

IN, a prefix, L. in, is used in composition as a particle of negation, like the English un, of which it seems to be a dialectical orthography; or it denotes within, into, or among, as in inbred, incase; or it serves only to augment or render emphatical the sense of the word to which it is prefixed, as in inclose, increase.

In, before l, is changed into il, as in illusion; and before r, into ir, as in irregular; and into im, before a labial, as in imbitter, immaterial, impatient.

IN, prep. [L. in.] In denotes present or inclosed, surrounded by limits; as in a house; in a fort; in a city. It denotes a state of being mixed, as sugar in tea; or combined, as carbonic acid in coal, or latent heat in air. It denotes present in any state; as in sickness or health. It denotes present in time; as in that hour or day. The uses of in, however, cannot, in all cases, be defined by equivalent words, except by explaining the phrase in which it is used; as in deed; in fact; in essence; in quality; in reason; in courage; in spirits, etc. A man in spirits or good courage, denotes one who possesses at the time spirits or courage; in reason is equivalent to with reason; one in ten denotes one of that number, and we say also one of ten, and one out of ten.

In the name, is used in phrases of invoking, swearing, declaring, praying, etc. In prayer, it denotes by virtue of, or for the sake of. In the name of the people, denotes on their behalf or part; in their stead, or for their sake.

In, in many cases, is equivalent to on. This use of the word is frequent in the Scriptures; as, let fowls multiply in the earth. This use is more frequent in England than in America. We generally use on, in all similar phrases.

In signifies by or through. In thee shall all nations be blessed. I am glorified in them.

In that, is sometimes equivalent to because.

Some things they do in that they are men; some things in that they are men misled and blinded with error.

In these and similar phrases, that is an antecedent, substitute, or pronoun relating to the subsequent part of the sentence, or the subsequent clause. God commendeth his love towards us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. That is, in the fact stated in the latter clause, for which that is the substitute. Romans 5:8.

In as much, seeing; seeing that; this being the fact. I will ride for health, inasmuch as I am infirm.

In is often used without the noun to which it properly belongs. I care not who is in, or who is out, that is, in office, or out of office. Come in, that is, into the house or other place. Who has or will come in, that is, into office. A vessel has come in, that is, into port, or has arrived.

To be or keep in with, to be close or near.

Keep the ship in with the land.

INABILITY, n. [L. inhabilis; in and habilis.]

1. Want of sufficient physical power or strength; as the inability of a man to raise an arm or a leg.

2. Want of adequate means; as an inability to purchase a farm, or to fit out a ship.

3. Want of moral power. Moral inability is considered to be want of inclination, disposition or will, or a deep-rooted aversion to act, and therefore improperly so called.

Moral inability aggravates our guilt.

4. Want of intellectual strength or force; as an inability to comprehend a mathematical demonstration.

5. Want of knowledge or skill; as an inability to read or write.

INABLEMENT, n. [See Enable.] Ability. [Not in use.]

INABSTINENCE, n. [in and abstinence.] A not abstaining; a partaking; indulgence of appetite; as the inabstinence of Eve.

INABUSIVELY, adv. Without abuse.


The quality or state of being inaccessible, or not to be reached.

INACCESSIBLE, a. [in and accessible.]

1. Not to be reached; as an inaccessible highth or rock. The depths of the sea are inaccessible.

2. Not to be obtained. The necessary vouchers are inaccessible.

3. Not to be approached; forbidding access; as an inaccessible prince.

INACCESSIBLY, adv. So as not to be approached.

INACCURACY, n. [from inaccurate.] Want of accuracy or exactness; mistake; fault; defect; error; as an inaccuracy in writing, in a transcript, or in a calculation.

INACCURATE, a. [in and accurate.] Not accurate; not exact or correct; not according to truth; erroneous; as an inaccurate man; he is inaccurate in narration; the transcript or copy is inaccurate; the instrument is inaccurate.

INACCURATELY, adv. Not according to truth; incorrectly; erroneously. The accounts are inaccurately stated.

INACTION, n. Want of action; forbearance of labor; idleness; rest.

INACTIVE, a. [in and active.] Not active; inert; having no power to move. Matter is, per se, inactive.

1. Not active; not diligent or industrious; not busy; idle. Also, habitually idle; indolent; sluggish; as an inactive officer.

INACTIVELY, adv. Idly; sluggishly; without motion, labor or employment.

INACTIVITY, n. [in and activity.] Inertness; as the inactivity of matter.

1. Idleness, or habitual idleness; want of action or exertion; sluggishness.

INACTUATE, v.t. To put in action. [Not used.]

INACTUATION, n. Operation. [Not used.]

INADEQUACY, n. [from inadequate.] The quality of being unequal or insufficient for a purpose.

The inadequacy and consequent inefficacy of the alleged causes--

1. Inequality.

Dr. Price considers this inadequacy of representation as our fundamental grievance.

2. Incompleteness; defectiveness; as the inadequacy of ideas.

INADEQUATE, a. [in and adequate. L. adoequatus, from adoequo, to equal.]

1. Not equal to the purpose; insufficient to effect the object; unequal; as inadequate power, strength, resources.

2. Not equal to the real state or condition of a thing; not just or in due proportion; partial; incomplete; as inadequate ideas of God, of his perfections, or moral government; an inadequate compensation for services.

3. Incomplete; defective; not just; as inadequate representation or description.

INADEQUATELY, adv. Not fully or sufficiently; not completely.

INADEQUATENESS, n. The quality of being inadequate; inadequacy; inequality; incompleteness.

INADEQUATION, n. Want of exact correspondence.

INADHESION, n. s as z. [in and adhesion.] Want of adhesion; a not adhering.

Porcelain clay is distinguished from colorific earths by inadhesion to the fingers.

INADMISSIBILITY, n. [from inadmissible.] The quality of being inadmissible, or not proper to be received; as the inadmissibility of an argument, or of evidence in court, or of a proposal in a negotiation.

INADMISSIBLE, a. Not admissible; not proper to be admitted, allowed or received; as inadmissible testimony; as inadmissible proposition.

INADVERTENCE, INADVERTENCY, n. [L. in and advertens, adverto. See Advert.]

1. A not turning the mind to; inattention; negligence; heedlessness. Many mistakes and some misfortunes proceed from inadvertence.

2. The effect of inattention; any oversight, mistake or fault which proceeds from negligence of thought.

The productions of a great genius, with many lapses and inadvertencies, are infinitely preferable to works of an inferior kind of author.

INADVERTENT, a. [L. in and advertens.] Not turning the mind to; heedless; careless; negligent.

INADVERTENTLY, adv. Heedlessly; carelessly; from want of attention; inconsiderately.

INAFFABILITY, n. Reservedness in conversation.

INAFFABLE, a. Not affable; reserved.

INAFFECTATION, n. Destitution of affected manner.

INAFFECTED, a. Unaffected. [Not used.]

INAIDABALE, a. That cannot be assisted.

INALIENABLE, a. [L. alieno, alienus.]

Unalienable; that cannot be legally or justly alienated or transferred to another. The dominions of a king are inalienable. All men have certain natural rights which are inalienable. The estate of a minor is inalienable, without a reservation of the right of redemption, or the authority of the legislature.

INALIENABLENESS, n. The state of being inalienable.

INALIENABLY, adv. In a manner that forbids alienation; as rights inalienably vested.

INALIMENTAL, a. [in and aliment.] Affording no nourishment.

INALTERABILITY, n. [from inalterable.] The quality of not being alterable or changeable.

INALTERABLE, a. [in and alterable.] That cannot or may not be altered or changed; unalterable.

INAMIABLE, a. Unamiable. [Not in use.]

INAMIABLENESS, n. Unamiableness. [Not in use.]

INAMISSIBLE, a. [L. in and amitto, to lose.] Not to be lost.

[Little used.]

INAMISSIBLENESS, n. The state of not being liable to be lost.

INAMORATO, n. [L. in and amor, love.] A lover.

INANE, a. [L. inanis, empty.] Empty; void; sometimes used as a noun, to express a void space.

INANGULAR, a. Not angular. [Little used.]

INANIMATE, v.t. [infra.] To animate. [Little used.]

INANIMATE, a. [L. inanimatus; in and animo, animatus.]

1. Destitute of animal life. Plants, stones and earth are inanimate substances; a corpse is an inanimate body.

2. Destitute of animation or life.

INANIMATED, a. Destitute of animal life.

1. Not animated; not sprightly. [See Unanimated.]

INANITION, n. [L. inanis, empty.]

Emptiness; want of fullness; as inanition of body or of the vessels.

INANITY, n. [L. inanitas, from inanis, void.]

Emptiness; void space; vacuity.

INAPPETENCE, INAPPETENCY, n. [in and appetence, L. appetentia.]

Want of appetence, or of a disposition to seek, select or imbibe nutriment. [See Appetence.]

1. Want of desire or inclination.

INAPPLICABILITY, n. [from inapplicable.]

The quality of not being applicable; unfitness.

INAPPLICABLE, a. [in and applicable.] Not applicable; that cannot be applied; not suited or suitable to the purpose. The argument or the testimony is inapplicable to the case.

INAPPLICATION, n. Want of application; want of attention or assiduity; negligence; indolence; neglect of study or industry.

INAPPOSITE, a. s as z. [in and apposite.] Not apposite; not fit or suitable; not pertinent; as an inapposite argument.

INAPPRECIABLE, a. [in and appreciable, from appreciate.]

1. Not to be appreciated; that cannot be duly valued.

2. That cannot be estimated.

INAPPREHENSIBLE, a. Not intelligible.

INAPPREHENSIVE, a. Not apprehensive; regardless.

INAPPROACHABLE, a. [in and approachable.]

Not to be approached; inaccessible.

INAPPROPRIATE, a. [in and appropriate.]

Not appropriate; unsuited; not proper.

1. Not appropriate; not belonging to.

INAPTITUDE, n. [in and aptitude.] Want of aptitude; unfitness; unsuitableness.

INAQUATE, a. [L. in and aquatus.] Embodied in water.

INAQUATION, n. The state of being inaquate.

INARABLE, v. [in and arable.]

Not arable; not capable of being plowed or tilled.

INARCH, v.t. [in and arch.] To graft by approach; to graft by uniting a cion to a stock without separating it from its parent tree.

INARCHED, pp. Grafted by approach.