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[im-byoo] /ɪmˈbyu/
verb (used with object), imbued, imbuing.
to impregnate or inspire, as with feelings, opinions, etc.:
The new political leader was imbued with the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi.
to saturate or impregnate with moisture, color, etc.
to imbrue.
Origin of imbue
1545-55; < Latin imbuere to wet, drench
Related forms
imbuement, noun
preimbue, verb (used with object), preimbued, preimbuing.
unimbued, adjective
Can be confused
imbrue, imbue.
1. charge, infect, fire. 2. permeate, infuse, tincture, soak. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for imbued
  • Apart from the bitumen and antiseptic materials with which the body was imbued far.
  • Managers imbued with the culture of state industries might not have done so.
  • Some places or regions are imbued with great significance by certain groups of people, but not by others.
  • You've imbued an object with a personal take so naturally that you don't realize you've done it.
  • Imagine an entire town imbued with the idea of community and connectivity rolled into one.
  • The historic center is imbued with striking monuments and generous squares that suggest good urban planning.
  • Those people are forever imbued with western concepts of human worth, and the long term value of free expression.
  • Some masks are up to three feet long and believed to be imbued with magical powers.
  • Imagine every object in the everyday world imbued with this kind of intelligence.
  • So far as money is concerned the community is imbued with a spirit of grasp and take.
British Dictionary definitions for imbued


verb -bues, -buing, -bued (transitive) usually foll by with
to instil or inspire (with ideals, principles, etc): his sermons were imbued with the spirit of the Reformation
(rare) to soak, esp with moisture, dye, etc
Derived Forms
imbuement, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin imbuere to stain, accustom
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
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Word Origin and History for imbued



early 15c., "to keep wet; to soak, saturate;" also figuratively "to cause to absorb" (feelings, opinions, etc.), from Latin imbuere "moisten," of uncertain origin, perhaps from the same root as imbrication. Cf. also Old French embu, past participle of emboivre, from Latin imbibere "drink in, soak in" (see imbibe), which might have influenced the English word. Related: Imbued; imbuing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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