imagine Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “imagine” in the English Dictionary

"imagine" in British English

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imagineverb [T]

uk   us   /ɪˈmædʒ.ɪn/
B1 to ​form or have a ​mentalpicture or ​idea of something: Imagine Robert Redford when he was ​young - that's what John ​looks like. [+ (that)] Imagine (that) you're ​eatingicecream - ​try to ​feel how ​cold it is. [+ question word] Can you imagine how it ​feels to be ​blind? [+ -ing verb] She imagined herself sitting in her ​favouritechair back ​home. They hadn't imagined (= ​expected) (that) it would be so ​difficult. I can't imagine (= I really don't ​know) what he ​wants from us.B2 to ​believe that something is ​probablytrue: [+ (that)] I imagine (that) he's under a lot of ​pressure at the ​moment. I don't imagine (that) they have much ​money. "Will they ​change it?" "I imagine so."B1 to ​think that something ​exists or is ​true, ​although in ​fact it is not ​real or ​true: "Did you ​hear a ​noise?" "No, you're imagining things/No, you must have imagined it." I've never ​heard her ​criticize you - I ​think you imagine it. used to ​expressshock or ​surprise, often at someone else's ​behaviour: She got ​married at 16! Imagine that! [+ -ing verb] Imagine ​spending all that ​money on a ​coat!you can't imagine used to ​emphasize a ​statement: You can't imagine what a ​mess the ​house was in after the ​party.

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(Definition of imagine from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"imagine" in American English

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imagineverb [T]

 us   /ɪˈmædʒ·ən/
to ​form or have a ​mentalpicture or ​idea of something or someone: Imagine ​Tom as a ​child – that’s what ​Johnlooks like. [+ that clause] I imagine (= ​expect) (that) they ​chargeextra for ​dessert. If you imagine something that is not ​real or ​true, you ​think that it ​exists, has ​happened, or is ​true: "Did you ​hear a ​noise?" "No, you’re imagining things."
(Definition of imagine from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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