A Word A Day : Imputation

Wednesday, 9th April 2008 : Today's Word is ...


( Noun )

Pronunciation : ìmpyu-táy-sh'n


1. a statement attributing something dishonest (especially a criminal offense)

2. the attribution to a source or cause

3. a charging of someone with a misdeed


Origin: 1535–45 - LL imputātiōn - imputāt(us) ptp. of imputāre to ascribe


accusation, charge, denouncement, denunciation, incrimination, ascription, assignment, attribution, credit, allusion

Allusion is an indirect mention.

Illusion is a false impression.

Delusion is deception which is much stronger than illusion.


absolution, exoneration, forgiveness, vindication

Contextual Examples:

• He denied the imputation that it was only he who committed the mistake.

• The imputation that my success was due to nepotism meant that I was not taken seriously.

• And of all princes, it is impossible for the new prince to avoid the imputation of cruelty, owing to new states being full of dangers.

• I take the imputation in good part as a compliment to the just delineation of my female characters.


Imputation is used to designate any action or word or thing as reckoned to a person. Thus in doctrinal language (1) the sin of Adam is imputed to all his descendants, i.e., it is reckoned as theirs, and they are dealt with therefore as guilty; (2) the righteousness of Christ is imputed to them that believe in him, or so attributed to them as to be considered their own; and (3) our sins are imputed to Christ, i.e., he assumed our "law-place," undertook to answer the demands of justice for our sins. In all these cases the nature of imputation is the same (Rom. 5:12-19; comp. Philemon 1:18, 19).

Related Words:

imputatively : Adverb

imputative : Adjective

imputable : Adjective

impute : Verb

imputer : Noun

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