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[im-puh-zish-uh n] /ˌɪm pəˈzɪʃ ən/
the laying on of something as a burden or obligation.
something imposed, as a burden or duty; an unusual or extraordinarily burdensome requirement or task.
the act of imposing by or as if by authority.
an instance of imposing upon a person:
He did the favor but considered the request an imposition.
the act of imposing fraudulently or deceptively on others; imposture.
the ceremonial laying on of hands, as in confirmation or ordination.
Printing. the arrangement of page plates in proper order on a press for printing a signature.
the act of putting, placing, or laying on.
Origin of imposition
1325-75; Middle English imposicioun < Late Latin impositiōn- (stem of impositiō), equivalent to imposit(us) past participle of impōnere to place upon, impose (im- im-1 + posi-, variant stem of pōnere to put + -tus past participle suffix) + -iōn- -ion
Related forms
nonimposition, noun
preimposition, noun
reimposition, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for imposition
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • They were Western Americans, and not over much used to imposition.

  • Greenfield,” said the master, kindly, “how much of your imposition have you done?

  • More than once the province rose in arms to resist the imposition of taxes of Castilian origin.

    A History of Spain Charles E. Chapman
  • This is equivalent to the imposition of a tax on all the sugar consumed at home.

    Commercial Geography Jacques W. Redway
  • Do you suppose that we could, even if we would, continue to lend ourselves to the imposition?

    The Meaning of Good--A Dialogue G. Lowes Dickinson
British Dictionary definitions for imposition


the act of imposing
something that is imposed unfairly on someone
(in Britain) a task set as a school punishment
the arrangement of pages for printing so that the finished work will have its pages in the correct order
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 imposition

late 14c., "the levying of taxes, a tax, duty, tribute," from Old French imposicion "tax, duty; a fixing" (early 14c.), from Latin impositionem (nominative impositio) "a laying on," from imponere "to place upon," from assimilated form of in- "into, in" (see in- (2)) + ponere "to put, place" (see position). Sense of "the act of putting (something) on (something else)" is from 1590s. Meaning "an act or instance of imposing" (on someone) first recorded 1630s (see impose).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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