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[im-ped-uh-muh nt] /ɪmˈpɛd ə mənt/
obstruction; hindrance; obstacle.
any physical defect that impedes normal or easy speech; a speech disorder.
Chiefly Ecclesiastical Law. a bar, usually of blood or affinity, to marriage:
a diriment impediment.
Usually, impediments. impedimenta.
Origin of impediment
1350-1400; Middle English < Latin impedīmentum. See impede, -ment
Related forms
[im-ped-uh-men-tl] /ɪmˌpɛd əˈmɛn tl/ (Show IPA),
impedimentary, adjective
nonimpedimental, adjective
nonimpedimentary, adjective
1. bar, encumbrance, check. See obstacle.
1. help, encouragement. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for impediment
  • He rightly identified air resistance as the largest impediment and energy cost in high speed transportation.
  • Any look at how kids have adapted to social networking and technology will tell you that gaming isn't an impediment to learning.
  • Taking this job would have been a impediment to your goals.
  • Scarcity of resources is not an impediment but an enabler for frugal innovation.
  • Another impediment is the unnecessarily rigid restriction on speed.
  • But the biggest impediment may simply be a lack of quality control.
  • Bribery of local officials combined with the lack of financial resources and national political will are the main impediment.
  • At the moment, he says, the key impediment to such progress is the continuing presence of the names.
  • Once there, they acted as an impediment to future sales and often had to be dumped later at low prices.
  • For a romantic comedy to work, there needs to be some impediment to the two leads getting together.
British Dictionary definitions for impediment


a hindrance or obstruction
a physical defect, esp one of speech, such as a stammer
(law) (pl) -ments, -menta (-ˈmɛntə). an obstruction to the making of a contract, esp a contract of marriage by reason of closeness of blood or affinity
Derived Forms
impedimental, impedimentary, adjective
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 impediment

c.1400, from Latin impedimentem "hindrance," from impedire "impede," literally "to shackle the feet," from assimilated form of in- "into, in" (see in- (2)) + pes (genitive pedis) "foot" (see foot (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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impediment in Medicine

impediment im·ped·i·ment (ĭm-pěd'ə-mənt)

  1. Something that impedes; a hindrance or an obstruction.

  2. An organic defect preventing clear articulation of speech.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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