browse words by letter
a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z
imagination

more about imagination

imagination


  3  definitions  found 
 
  From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]: 
 
  Imagination  \Im*ag`i*na"tion\,  n.  [OE.  imaginacionum  F. 
  imagination,  fr  L.  imaginatio.  See  {Imagine}.] 
  1.  The  imagine-making  power  of  the  mind;  the  power  to  create 
  or  reproduce  ideally  an  object  of  sense  previously 
  perceived;  the  power  to  call  up  mental  imagines. 
 
  Our  simple  apprehension  of  corporeal  objects,  if 
  present,  is  sense  if  absent,  is  imagination. 
  --Glanvill. 
 
  Imagination  is  of  three  kinds:  joined  with  belief  of 
  that  which  is  to  come  joined  with  memory  of  that 
  which  is  past;  and  of  things  present,  or  as  if  they 
  were  present.  --Bacon. 
 
  2.  The  representative  power;  the  power  to  reconstruct  or 
  recombine  the  materials  furnished  by  direct  apprehension; 
  the  complex  faculty  usually  termed  the  plastic  or  creative 
  power;  the  fancy. 
 
  The  imagination  of  common  language  --  the  productive 
  imagination  of  philosophers  --  is  nothing  but  the 
  representative  process  plus  the  process  to  which  I 
  would  give  the  name  of  the  ``comparative.''  --Sir  W. 
  Hamilton. 
 
  The  power  of  the  mind  to  decompose  its  conceptions, 
  and  to  recombine  the  elements  of  them  at  its 
  pleasure,  is  called  its  faculty  of  imagination.  --I. 
  Taylor. 
 
  The  business  of  conception  is  to  present  us  with  an 
  exact  transcript  of  what  we  have  felt  or  perceived. 
  But  we  have  moreover  a  power  of  modifying  our 
  conceptions,  by  combining  the  parts  of  different 
  ones  together,  so  as  to  form  new  wholes  of  our 
  creation.  I  shall  employ  the  word  imagination  to 
  express  this  power.  --Stewart. 
 
  3.  The  power  to  recombine  the  materials  furnished  by 
  experience  or  memory,  for  the  accomplishment  of  an 
  elevated  purpose;  the  power  of  conceiving  and  expressing 
  the  ideal. 
 
  The  lunatic,  the  lover,  and  the  poet  Are  of 
  imagination  all  compact  .  .  .  The  poet's  eye,  in  a 
  fine  frenzy  rolling,  Doth  glance  from  heaven  to 
  earth,  from  earth  to  heaven,  And  as  imagination 
  bodies  forth  The  forms  of  things  unknown,  the  poet's 
  pen  Turns  them  to  shapes,  and  gives  to  airy  nothing 
  A  local  habitation  and  a  name  --Shak. 
 
  4.  A  mental  image  formed  by  the  action  of  the  imagination  as 
  a  faculty;  a  conception;  a  notion.  --Shak. 
 
  Syn:  Conception;  idea;  conceit;  fancy;  device;  origination; 
  invention;  scheme;  design;  purpose;  contrivance. 
 
  Usage:  {Imagination},  {Fancy}.  These  words  have  to  a  great 
  extent,  been  interchanged  by  our  best  writers,  and 
  considered  as  strictly  synonymous.  A  distinction, 
  however,  is  now  made  between  them  which  more  fully 
  exhibits  their  nature.  Properly  speaking,  they  are 
  different  exercises  of  the  same  general  power  --  the 
  plastic  or  creative  faculty.  Imagination  consists  in 
  taking  parts  of  our  conceptions  and  combining  them 
  into  new  forms  and  images  more  select,  more  striking, 
  more  delightful,  more  terrible,  etc.,  than  those  of 
  ordinary  nature.  It  is  the  higher  exercise  of  the  two 
  It  creates  by  laws  more  closely  connected  with  the 
  reason;  it  has  strong  emotion  as  its  actuating  and 
  formative  cause  it  aims  at  results  of  a  definite  and 
  weighty  character.  Milton's  fiery  lake,  the  debates  of 
  his  Pandemonium,  the  exquisite  scenes  of  his  Paradise, 
  are  all  products  of  the  imagination.  Fancy  moves  on  a 
  lighter  wing;  it  is  governed  by  laws  of  association 
  which  are  more  remote,  and  sometimes  arbitrary  or 
  capricious.  Hence  the  term  fanciful,  which  exhibits 
  fancy  in  its  wilder  flights.  It  has  for  its  actuating 
  spirit  feelings  of  a  lively,  gay,  and  versatile 
  character;  it  seeks  to  please  by  unexpected 
  combinations  of  thought,  startling  contrasts,  flashes 
  of  brilliant  imagery,  etc  Pope's  Rape  of  the  Lock  is 
  an  exhibition  of  fancy  which  has  scarcely  its  equal  in 
  the  literature  of  any  country.  --  ``This,  for 
  instance,  Wordsworth  did  in  respect  of  the  words 
  `imagination'  and  `fancy.'  Before  he  wrote,  it  was  I 
  suppose,  obscurely  felt  by  most  that  in  `imagination' 
  there  was  more  of  the  earnest,  in  `fancy'  of  the  play 
  of  the  spirit;  that  the  first  was  a  loftier  faculty 
  and  gift  than  the  second  yet  for  all  this  words  were 
  continually,  and  not  without  loss  confounded.  He 
  first  in  the  preface  to  his  Lyrical  Ballads,  rendered 
  it  henceforth  impossible  that  any  one  who  had  read 
  and  mastered  what  he  has  written  on  the  two  words 
  should  remain  unconscious  any  longer  of  the  important 
  difference  between  them.''  --Trench. 
 
  The  same  power,  which  we  should  call  fancy  if 
  employed  on  a  production  of  a  light  nature, 
  would  be  dignified  with  the  title  of  imagination 
  if  shown  on  a  grander  scale.  --C.  J.  Smith. 
 
  From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]: 
 
  imagination 
  n  1:  the  power  of  imagination;  "popular  imagination  created  a 
  world  of  demons"  [syn:  {imaginativeness},  {vision}] 
  2:  the  ability  to  form  mental  images  of  things  or  events;  "he 
  could  still  hear  her  in  his  imagination"  [syn:  {imaging}, 
  {imagery},  {mental  imagery}] 
  3:  the  ability  to  deal  resourcefully  with  unusual  problems;  "a 
  man  of  resource"  [syn:  {resource},  {resourcefulness}] 
 
  From  THE  DEVIL'S  DICTIONARY  ((C)1911  Released  April  15  1993)  [devils]: 
 
  IMAGINATION,  n.  A  warehouse  of  facts,  with  poet  and  liar  in  joint 
  ownership. 
 
 




more about imagination