In weather forecasting imminent is defined as within 6 hours from time of issue of the warning. You usually hear this on sea area forecasts in relation to gale warnings.

A recent headline in New Scientist "Direct view of extrasolar planet imminent" left me chuckling - it went on to say that we might get a glimpse within 12 months. If astronomers ran the country...

Im"mi*nent (?), a. [L. imminens, p. pr. of imminere to project; pref. im- in + minere (in comp.) to jut, project. See Eminent.]


Threatening to occur immediately; near at hand; impending; -- said especially of misfortune or peril.

"In danger imminent."



Full of danger; threatening; menacing; perilous.

Hairbreadth scapes i' the imminent deadly breach. Shak.


(With upon) Bent upon; attentive to.


Their eyes ever imminent upon worldly matters. Milton.

Syn. -- Impending; threatening; near; at hand. -- Imminent, Impending, Threatening. Imminent is the strongest: it denotes that something is ready to fall or happen on the instant; as, in imminent danger of one's life. Impending denotes that something hangs suspended over us, and may so remain indefinitely; as, the impending evils of war. Threatening supposes some danger in prospect, but more remote; as, threatening indications for the future.

Three times to-day You have defended me from imminent death. Shak.

No story I unfold of public woes, Nor bear advices of impending foes. Pope.

Fierce faces threatening war. Milton.


© Webster 1913.

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