Meaning of ABLE in English


/ ˈeɪbl; NAmE / adjective


able to do sth (used as a modal verb) to have the skill, intelligence, opportunity, etc. needed to do sth :

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A viral illness left her barely able to walk.

I didn't feel able to disagree with him.

Will you be able to come?

OPP unable ➡ note at can (I)


( abler / ˈeɪblə(r); NAmE /, ablest / ˈeɪblɪst; NAmE /) intelligent; good at sth :

the ablest student in the class

We aim to help the less able in society to lead an independent life.

—see also ably



able adjective (≠ unable )

ability noun (≠ inability )

disabled adjective

disability noun



late Middle English (also in the sense easy to use, suitable ): from Old French hable , from Latin habilis handy, from habere to hold.

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.