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imagination

noun
     
i‧ma‧gi‧na‧tion S3 W3
1 [uncountable and countable] the ability to form pictures or ideas in your mindCOLLOCATIONS COLLOCATIONS
use your imagination vivid/fertile/creative imagination (=when you have many pictures and ideas in your mind) overactive imagination (=when you imagine things that are very unlikely) lack of imagination something takes imagination stretch somebody's/the imagination (=make someone imagine something very unlikely) fire somebody's imagination (=make someone eager to use their imagination) with a little imagination
You don't have to use your imagination when you're watching television.
Children often have very vivid imaginations.
There is a lack of imagination in the way the furniture is displayed.
It does not take much imagination to understand the depth of their grief.
These ancient objects must have fired his imagination.
With a little imagination, you can find great inexpensive Christmas gifts.
2

be (a figment of) somebody's imagination

to be something that someone imagines, not something that really exists or happens:
Did you hear that noise, or was it my imagination?
These people do exist; they're not figments of my imagination.
3

in somebody's imagination

only existing or happening in someone's mind, not in real life:
For the refugees, home exists only in their imagination.
4

capture/catch somebody's imagination

to make people feel very interested and excited:
American football really captured the imagination of the British public.
5

leave something to somebody's imagination

to deliberately not describe something because you think someone can guess or imagine it:
Mercifully, the writer leaves most of the physical horrors to our imagination.
6

leave little/nothing to the imagination

a) if someone's clothes leave little or nothing to the imagination, the clothes are very thin or are worn in a way that shows the person's body:
Her black satin dress left nothing to the imagination.
b) if something sexual or violent is described in a way that leaves nothing to the imagination, it is described in too much detail
7

use your imagination

spoken used to tell someone that they can easily guess the answer to a question, so you should not need to tell them

➔ not by any stretch of the imagination

at stretch2 (4)

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