American English

Definition of imperative adjective from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[not usually before noun] (formal) very important and needing immediate attention or action synonym vital imperative (that…) It is absolutely imperative that we finish by next week. imperative (to do something) It is imperative to continue the treatment for at least two months. Language Bankvitalsaying that something is necessary It is vital that journalists are able to verify the accuracy of their reports. Journalists play a vital/crucial role in educating the public. Public trust is a crucial issue for all news organizations. The ability to write well is essential for any journalist. The Internet has become an indispensable tool for reporters. In journalism, accuracy is paramount. / …is of paramount importance. It is imperative that journalists maintain the highest possible standards of reporting.
  2. 2(formal) expressing authority an imperative tone
  3. 3[only before noun] (grammar) expressing an order an imperative sentence
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: imperative

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