Meaning of SUFFICIENT in English


I. -nt adjective

Etymology: Middle English, from Latin sufficient-, sufficiens, from present participle of sufficere to suffice

1. : marked by quantity, scope, power, or quality to meet with the demands, wants, or needs of a situation or of a proposed use or end

an ample sum, one sufficient to supply those wants of hers — Thomas Hardy

have not sufficient information to state the exact damage — F.D.Roosevelt

2. archaic : adequately qualified or competent

3. obsolete

a. : excessively self-confident

b. : wealthy , well-to-do

4. archaic : well-made : substantial

5. of a bid in bridge : higher in rank than the bid over which it is made


enough , adequate , competent : sufficient is likely to refer to a quantity or scope that meets the demands of a specific situation

like ninety-nine percent of those who are taught the classics, I never acquired sufficient proficiency to read them with pleasure — Bertrand Russell

a pinch from his snuffbox was an honor sufficient to turn the head of a young enthusiast — T.B.Macaulay

enough , often placed after the noun it modifies, as in men enough, money enough, is less exact and more approximate than sufficient in its suggestion

my country! and 'tis joy enough and pride for one hour's perfect bliss to tread the grass of England once again — William Wordsworth

adequate may suggest barely meeting a requirement, with nothing excessive or ample remaining

vocabulary … was perfectly adequate to the clear and forceful statement of his ideas — Aldous Huxley

adequate is wider in its sphere of use than sufficient or enough

you can get along quite comfortably if you're just adequate, but it's different with an artist — W.S.Maugham

competent , usually not used in reference to counting or physical measurement like others in this set, may be entirely complimentary or may imply some of the slighting suggestion of adequate

her competent steely mind never rested — Rebecca West

competent narrative or exposition, skilled but not beautiful or artistic writing such as deserves the name of literature — Samuel Alexander

II. noun

( -s )

: sufficiency , enough

ate till he had sufficient

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.