AskDefine | Define impregnable

Dictionary Definition

impregnable adj
1 able to withstand attack; "an impregnable fortress"; "fortifications that made the frontier inviolable" [syn: inviolable, secure, strong, unassailable, unattackable]
2 impossible to take by storm [syn: inexpugnable]

User Contributed Dictionary



Ultimately from im- "not", French prendre "to take", and -able "able to be __-ed".


  1. (Of a fortress, wall, etc.) Too strong to be penetrated.

Extensive Definition

Ten ships of the British Royal Navy have been named HMS Impregnable:
From 1862 the second Impregnable was used as a training ship at Devonport. As training ships were replaced or added to the establishment, each was renamed Impregnable when she took on the role. These ships were originally:
  • Howe, launched in 1860, was Impregnable from 1886–1919.
  • Inconstant, launched in 1868, was Impregnable II from 1898–1906.
  • Black Prince, launched in 1861, was Impregnable III from 1910–1923.
  • Circe, launched in 1827, was Impregnable IV from 1916–1922.
  • Powerful, launched in 1895, was Impregnable from 1919–1929.
  • Andromeda, launched in 1897, was Impregnable II from 1919–1931.
  • Caroline, launched in 1882, was Impregnable IV from 1919–1929.
  • Ganges, launched in 1821, was Impregnable III from 1922–1929.
Impregnable moved ashore in 1936, becoming a stone frigate, and closed in 1948.


Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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