What word does your mother always say?


[ih-maj-uh-nuh-tiv, -ney-tiv] /ɪˈmædʒ ə nə tɪv, -ˌneɪ tɪv/
characterized by or bearing evidence of imagination:
an imaginative tale.
of, relating to, or concerned with imagination.
given to imagining, as persons.
having exceptional powers of imagination.
lacking truth; fanciful.
Origin of imaginative
1350-1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin imāginātīvus imaginary, imaginative, equivalent to Latin imāgināt(us) imagined (see imagination) + -īvus -ive; replacing Middle English imaginatif < Middle French < Medieval Latin, as above
Related forms
imaginatively, adverb
imaginativeness, noun
overimaginative, adjective
overimaginatively, adverb
overimaginativeness, noun
unimaginative, adjective
unimaginatively, adverb
Can be confused
imaginary, imaginative.
1. creative, inventive, clever, ingenious. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for imaginative
  • It's not only rigor, but they have to be creative and they have to be imaginative.
  • Free, imaginative play is crucial for normal social, emotional and cognitive development.
  • But there's always an imaginative oddball game lost within the white noise.
  • While it puts back imaginative literature for a time, war is not unproductive of books.
  • The capacity for imaginative pleasure is universal, and it emerges early in development.
  • Gross's work is never less than imaginative and insightful.
  • But you describe it as being the extraordinarily imaginative time in your life.
  • Perhaps its imprecision, producing imaginative attempts at interpretation, is its sole intended purpose.
  • The more imaginative retailers are working around these problems.
  • These photos are really astounding and highly imaginative.
British Dictionary definitions for imaginative


produced by or indicative of a vivid or creative imagination: an imaginative story
having a vivid imagination
Derived Forms
imaginatively, adverb
imaginativeness, noun
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for imaginative

late 14c., ymaginatyf, from Old French imaginatif and directly from Medieval Latin imaginativus, from imaginat-, stem of Latin imaginari (see imagine). Related: Imaginatively; imaginativeness.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for imaginative

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for imaginative

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with imaginative

Nearby words for imaginative