• WordNet 3.6
    • adj impersonal having no personal preference "impersonal criticism","a neutral observer"
    • adj impersonal not relating to or responsive to individual persons "an impersonal corporation","an impersonal remark"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • a Impersonal Not personal; not representing a person; not having personality. "An almighty but impersonal power, called Fate."
    • n Impersonal (Gram) That which wants personality;
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • impersonal Not personal, Not existing or manifested as a person; having no conscious individuality; not endued with personality.
    • impersonal Not relating to a person, or to any particular person or persons; having no personal reference; not bearing the stamp of any particular personality: as, an impersonal remark.
    • impersonal In grammar, said of a verb not used with a personal subject, or employed to express action without specification of an actor, and hence used only in the third person, and either without a subject expressed, or with only the indefinite it (French il, German es, etc.): thus, Latin me tædet, French il m'ennuie, German es urgert mich, it irks me; or German mich dunkt, methinks —that is. (to) me (it) seems (methinks is nearly the sole relic left in English of the pure impersonal construction without subject); or it rains that is. rain is going on; or Latin pugnatur, it is fought —that is, fighting is going on. In many quasi-impersonal phrases the it is a grammatical subject, anticipating a logical subject that comes later: thus, it hurts one to fall —that is, falling hurts one; and so on.
    • n impersonal That which wants personality; an impersonal verb.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • adj Impersonal im-pėr′sun-al not having personality:
    • adj Impersonal personified
    • adj Impersonal im-pėr′sun-al (gram.) not varied according to the persons
    • ***


  • Simone Weil
    “An atheist may be simply one whose faith and love are concentrated on the impersonal aspects of God.”
  • Marie Carmichael Stopes
    Marie Carmichael Stopes
    “An impersonal and scientific knowledge of the structure of our bodies is the surest safeguard against prurient curiosity and lascivious gloating.”
  • John Berger
    “The envied are like bureaucrats; the more impersonal they are, the greater the illusion (for themselves and for others) of their power.”
  • Katherine Mansfield
    “Would you not like to try all sorts of lives -- one is so very small -- but that is the satisfaction of writing -- one can impersonate so many people.”
  • Johnny Carson
    Johnny Carson
    “If life was fair, Elvis would be alive and all the impersonators would be dead.”
  • Hubert H. Humphrey
    “The impersonal hand of government can never replace the helping hand of a neighbor.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L. impersonalis,; pref. im-, not + personalis, personal: cf. F. impersonnel,. See Personal


In literature:

There was certainly nothing in Dosia's quietly impersonal attitude to call it forth.
"McClure's Magazine, Vol 31, No 2, June 1908" by Various
I've never seen the rogue, much less impersonated him.
"Ainslee's, Vol. 15, No. 6, July 1905" by Various
Impersonal thought had attained a new strength and a new sweetness.
"The New Tenant" by E. Phillips Oppenheim
The kind of people she'd like to know treat servants impersonally.
"The Readjustment" by Will Irwin
More and more often, of late, I've observed the boy studying his father, studying him with an impersonal and critical eye.
"The Prairie Child" by Arthur Stringer
"Elements of Gaelic Grammar" by Alexander Stewart
Any politeness would have made the situation quite impersonal.
"The Rainbow" by D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence
Yet she was not impersonal; he felt that he could have found her again in a crowd of ten thousand.
"The Web of the Golden Spider" by Frederick Orin Bartlett
For an impersonal observer she realized they showed too much.
"The Wall Street Girl" by Frederick Orin Bartlett
The coach would probably discount the runs he had made while impersonating Pomeroy's star back, Dizzy Fox.
"Interference and Other Football Stories" by Harold M. Sherman

In poetry:

Sparkling chips of rock
are crushed down to the level of the parent block.
Were not 'impersonal judment in aesthetic
matters, a metaphysical impossibility,' you
"To a Steam Roller" by Marianne Moore
And I have watched the electric cities glow
With their impersonal and hiding light
Where women with the masklike faces walked
The worn and human-hunting ways of night.
"For 1939" by Paul Engle
Hence he must be all things to be free, for all impersonations
a doormat and a monument
to all situations possible or actual
The cuckold, the cuckoo, the conqueror, and the coxcomb.
"Apollo Musagete, Poetry, And The Leader Of The Muses" by Delmore Schwartz
An old actor at the Player’s Club told me that Edwin Booth
first impersonated Hamlet when a barnstormer in California.
There were few theatres, but the hotels were provided
with crude assembly rooms for strolling players.
"Edwin Booth" by Vachel Lindsay

In news:

The man who was being investigated for impersonating a police officer, will not be charged with impersonation of a public servant.
A former Kingsport Police officer convicted of criminal impersonation and forgery has been granted judicial diversion .
Bryan Carter pleaded no contest last month to impersonating a former police employee when he sent an email accusing the police chief of misconduct.
KINGSPORT — A Kingsport Police Department officer who resigned before pleading no contest to forgery and criminal impersonation in September has been granted judicial diversion for his crimes.
The editor, Colin Robinson, described how he got fired from a large publishing house, how impersonal it felt.
This 1971 made-for-TV movie was one of Steven Spielberg's auditions for Jaws, and the same slickly impersonal shock effects prevail.
Elvis impersonator with local roots back for Pittston library benefit concert.
The Associated Press talked with Miss Manners to give readers some pro tips to deal with the evolving etiquette of expressing sincere sentiments in an increasingly impersonal, digital world.
Lavant wows as a man who impersonates 11 different people in the course of a day.
The man who impersonated a member of the US military has died in a federal prison.
Portrayal of Abe's voice creates mixed feelings among impersonators.
Something we seniors find both impersonal and less effective in transmitting a meaningful message.
Roderick Jolivette was charged with impersonating a police officer and giving false information to police.
The Amarillo Globe-News reports 38-year-old Dustin Mark Fuller was arrested Aug 28 and charged with impersonating a public servant.
A man accused of impersonating a firefighter at a massive wildfire in northern Colorado appeared briefly in court for a procedural hearing.

In science:

To prove security of our protocol, we need to show that an adversary A after interacting with an honest prover P ∗ , can subsequently not impersonate P ∗ such that V ∗ will accept the identification.
Random Oracles in a Quantum World
To prove security of our protocol we need to show that an adversary A after interacting with an honest prover P ∗ , can subsequently not impersonate P ∗ such that V ∗ accepts the identification.
Random Oracles in a Quantum World
This eliminates impersonation and key modification. • Enforce security: Communications are more secure by using SSL to exchange information over the network.
A Secure Web-Based File Exchange Server: Software Requirements Specification Document
But, such a naive solution is totally insecure, for example, an adversary A can easily impersonate the prover ˆB and predetermine J P OK(b,y) to be 1G , by setting Y = B−1 .
A New Family of Practical Non-Malleable Diffie-Hellman Protocols
A, A, ˆB , B , X0 , Y0 ), where ˆA is an uncorrupted player of public-key A = ga , m1 corresponds to m ˆA (that is an arbitrary message sent by the adversary F impersonating the signer ˆB to the honest player ˆA), and m0 corresponds to m ˆB (that is chosen by the honest player ˆA).
A New Family of Practical Non-Malleable Diffie-Hellman Protocols