impregnable (adj.) early 15c., imprenable "impossible to capture," from M.Fr. imprenable "invulnerable," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see IN- (Cf. in-) (1)) + O.Fr. prenable "assailable, vulnerable," from stem of prendre "to take, grasp," from L. prehendere (see PREHENSILE (Cf. prehensile)). With intrusive -g- 16c., on model of DEIGN (Cf. deign), REIGN (Cf. reign), etc. Related: Impregnability.

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  • Impregnable — Im*preg na*ble, a. [F. imprenable; pref. im not + prenable pregnable, fr. prendre to take, L. prehendere. See {Comprehend}, {Get} to obtain.] Not to be stormed, or taken by assault; incapable of being subdued; able to resist attack;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • impregnable — impregnable1 [im preg′nə bəl] adj. [ME imprenable < OFr: see IN 2 & PREGNABLE] 1. not capable of being captured or entered by force 2. unshakable; unyielding; firm [an impregnable belief] impregnability n. impregnably adv. imp …   English World dictionary

  • Impregnable — Im*preg na*ble, a. [See Impregnate.] (Biol.) Capable of being impregnated, as the egg of an animal, or the ovule of a plant. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • impregnable — index defensible, immune, inappealable, incontestable, indomitable, inexpugnable, insuperable, insurmountable …   Law dictionary

  • imprégnable — [ɛ̃pʀeɲabl] adj. ÉTYM. 1803; de imprégner. ❖ ♦ Rare. Qui peut être imprégné (II.) …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • impregnable — inexpugnable, unassailable, invulnerable, *invincible, unconquerable, indomitable Analogous words: secure, *safe: protected, shielded, guarded, safeguarded, defended (see DEFEND) Contrasted words: exposed, open, *liable, susceptible, subject …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • impregnable — [adj] unyielding firm, fortified, impenetrable, indestructible, invincible, invulnerable, secure, solid, strong, unassailable; concepts 489,540,551 …   New thesaurus

  • impregnable — adj. Dicho de un cuerpo: Capaz de ser impregnado …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • impregnable — ► ADJECTIVE 1) unable to be captured or broken into. 2) unable to be overcome. DERIVATIVES impregnability noun impregnably adverb. ORIGIN Old French imprenable, from in not + prendre take …   English terms dictionary

  • impregnable — [[t]ɪmpre̱gnəb(ə)l[/t]] 1) ADJ If you describe a building or other place as impregnable, you mean that it cannot be broken into or captured. The old Dutch fort with its thick high walls looks virtually impregnable... In those impregnable… …   English dictionary

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