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1. an adult sexually mature insect produced after metamorphosis
2. Psychoanal an idealized image of another person, usually a parent, acquired in childhood and carried in the unconscious in later life



the final (definitive) stage of individual development in insects. The characteristic features of the imago are full development of the wings and the presence of genital appendages at the end of the abdomen. In this stage insects migrate and reproduce.

In insects with complete metamorphosis (for example, butterflies, beetles, Hymenoptera, and Diptera), the imago develops from a pupa. In insects with incomplete metamorphosis (Or-thoptera, Dermaptera, Jugatae, and Hemiptera), a larva (nymph) hatches from the ovum, which resembles the imago in the structure of its mouth apparatus and its extremities but which metamorphoses into an imago only after a series of molts.

Insects live in the imago stage from a few days to several years. In some mayflies longevity is measured in hours; in the Psychidae family (of butterflies) in minutes; some beetles—weevils and nocturnal ground beetles—live in the imago stage two to three years; queen bees live up to five years; and female ants up to 15 years.


(invertebrate zoology)
The sexually mature, usually winged stage of insect development.
An unconscious mental picture, usually idealized, of a parent or loved person important in the early development of an individual and carried into adulthood.
References in classic literature ?
I assure you, sir, that I simply concealed myself in order to see the effect of my disappearance, and I am sure that you would not be so unjust as to imagine that I would have allowed any harm to befall poor young Mr.
I can imagine little Fyne solemnly sympathetic, solemnly listening, solemnly retreating to the marital bedroom.
I do not know what I could imagine, but I confess that I have seldom seen a face or figure more pleasing to me than hers.
For, if you reflect a moment, you will see that, while it is easy to choose what virtues we would have our wife possess, it is all but impossible to imagine those faults we would desire in her, which I think most lovers would admit add piquancy to the loved one, that fascinating wayward imperfection which paradoxically makes her perfect.
It is quite impossible for the ordinary reader to imagine those eight days.
You imagine no doubt, gentlemen, that I want to amuse you.
The youth began to imagine that he had got into the center of the tremendous quarrel, and he could perceive no way out of it.
It gives me much pleasure to imagine that several successive governors of Massachusetts sat in it at the council board.
This insistence in using the odious word arises from the fact that a particularly benighted landsman must imagine the act of anchoring as a process of throwing something overboard, whereas the anchor ready for its work is already overboard, and is not thrown over, but simply allowed to fall.
As I happened to have been in a remarkably sound and refreshing slumber, I could not imagine why the information had not been deferred until morning, indeed, I felt very much inclined to fly into a passion and box my valet's ears; but on second thoughts I got quietly up, and on going outside the house was not a little interested by the moving illumination which I beheld.
Augusta (replied the noble Youth) I thought you had a better opinion of me, than to imagine I would so abjectly degrade myself as to consider my Father's Concurrence in any of my affairs, either of Consequence or concern to me.
You can't imagine what the winters are like in those countries, so long and dark and cold.