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See also: ability


Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English -ablete, -iblete, -abilite, -ibilite, from Middle French -ableté, -ibleté, -abilité, -ibilité, from Latin -abilitas, -ibilitas, from -abilis (able) or -ibilis (able) + -tas. Equivalent to -able + -ity.




  1. Forms a noun from a verb or an adjective by changing from -able; ability, inclination or suitability for a specified function or condition.

Usage notes[edit]

  • Most words ending in "ability" formed in English are first attested after corresponding words ending in -able.
  • Note that this is not simply -able + -ity: in English it is a parallel formation, not a compound suffix: there is a sound and spelling change. Compare -ably (compound suffix) and -ification (parallel suffix).
  • Some words ending in -ability are alterations of words of French origin ending in -abilité or Latin words ending in -abilitās.

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]