Research is described that examines the kinds of impressions formed from congruent and incongruent combinations of trait-descriptive adjectives. Impressions formed from congruent traits are easier to imagine than impressions formed from incongruent traits. Descriptions of targets specified by congruent traits are more likely to be integrated (i.e. to relate one trait to the other), whereas descriptions of targets specified by incongruent traits are more likely to be aggregated (i.e. to retain both traits but fail to relate them). Using an approach from cognitive psychology for the study of conceptual combinations, the inheritance of attributes by trait combinations was examined. More congruent combinations than incongruent ones exhibited a pattern of complete attribute inheritance, in which behaviors rated as likely for at least one of the constituents were also rated as likely for the combination. These findings illuminate the dificulties in reconciling incongruent trait combinations. Incongruent combinations are less likely to generate impressions in which the two traits can be related, and consequently may result in representations that fail to incorporate all the attributes of each constituent.