figment of (one's)/the imagination

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figment of (one's)/the imagination

An experience that initially is thought to be real but is actually imagined. I thought I heard the sound of my front door opening last night but it turned out to be a figment of my imagination.
See also: figment, imagination, of
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

figment of one's imagination

Something made up, invented, or fabricated, as in "The long dishevelled hair, the swelled black face, the exaggerated stature were figments of imagination" (Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre, 1847). This term is redundant, since figment means "product of the imagination." [Early 1800s]
See also: figment, imagination, of
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

a figment of somebody’s imagiˈnation

something which somebody only imagines: Doctor, are you suggesting the pain is a figment of my imagination?
See also: figment, imagination, of
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

figment of the imagination, a

An imaginary occurrence; a pipe dream. This expression is tautological, since figment means a product of fictitious invention. Nevertheless, it has been used since the mid-nineteenth century. It appeared in Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre (1847): “The long dishevelled hair, the swelled black face, the exaggerated stature, were figments of imagination.”
See also: figment, of
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in periodicals archive ?
Final instalment finds Billy back in the Scotland of his childhood where he reveals knitted woolly swimming trunks were not a figment of his imagination.
The programme finds Billy back in the Scotland of his childhood, where he reveals that knitted woolly swimming trunks were not a figment of his imagination. Featuring contributions by friends, fans and colleagues including Eddie Izzard, Ross Noble, Micky Flanagan, AL Kennedy, Tracey Ullman, Val McDermid, Sharleen Spiteri and Eddi Reader.
The alleged threat to the life of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV is nothing but a figment of his imagination in a bid to milk publicity for himself, Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo said Friday.
Maybe, that's just a figment of his imagination,' Calida told reporters.
"It is a figment of his imagination. It didn't happen, it's not true and when you say something like that without evidence, proof or naming names it's annoying.
To claim that the big cities of the North expect a Tory win, using the debate about a Metro Mayor v Combined Authority is, in my view, a figment of his imagination.
Expect a randy dad-in-law, a green slimy figment of his imagination, Simon Cowell and the Queen in the first ep.
The 25-year-old actor, who was promoting his new film 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn' on 'Jimmy Kimmel Live!', confessed that a long running chat show tale about his previous occupation was a figment of his imagination.
The source considered that the news published by the aforementioned newspaper is the result of the hallucinations of the newspaper's reporter, who did not find anything to report to the newspaper so he created false and untrue stories that are a figment of his imagination.
It is just a rose-tinted figment of his imagination.
Is this the safer world Tony Blair was telling us about?Or, like Saddam's stash of weapons, just another figment of his imagination
Koz to know that it was not a "total figment of his imagination." There was plenty to be afraid of.
While abuse of the kind he describes is undeniable, what happens next in the film is almost certainly a figment of his imagination.
But instead of performing on stage, Grint disclosed that Sheeran was a 'fake character' brought about by a figment of his imagination.
He said: "I suspect William Hague's capacity for 14 pints of Yorkshire bitter was a figment of his imagination.