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[im-peed] /ɪmˈpid/
verb (used with object), impeded, impeding.
to retard in movement or progress by means of obstacles or hindrances; obstruct; hinder.
Origin of impede
1595-1605; < Latin impedīre to entangle, literally, to snare the feet. See im-1, pedi-1
Related forms
impeder, noun
[im-pee-duh-bil-i-tee, -ped-uh-] /ɪmˌpi dəˈbɪl ɪ ti, -ˌpɛd ə-/ (Show IPA),
impedible, adjective
impedingly, adverb
unimpeded, adjective
unimpeding, adjective
unimpedingly, adverb
slow, delay, check, stop, block, thwart. See prevent.
advance, encourage. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for impede
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • In this section, our minute chequer-work of fences operates to obstruct and impede Plowing.

    What I know of farming: Horace Greeley
  • We have no thought to impede the paths to closer relationship.

  • Ariovistus sent thither about 16,000 of his light troops and all his cavalry, to intimidate the Romans and impede the works.

    History of Julius Caesar Vol. 2 of 2 Napoleon III, Emperor of the French, 1808-1873.
  • In camp you will discard it because it will impede the swing of your arms.

    The Forest Stewart Edward White
  • But you could do no good with so few men—they are more than ten to one, I hear—and your men would but impede us.

British Dictionary definitions for impede


(transitive) to restrict or retard in action, progress, etc; hinder; obstruct
Derived Forms
impeder, noun
impedingly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Latin impedīre to hinder, literally: shackle the feet, from pēs foot
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 impede

c.1600, back-formation from impediment, or else from Latin impedire "impede, be in the way, hinder, detain," literally "to shackle the feet" (see impediment). Related: Impeded; impedes; impeding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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