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From Middle English [Term?], from Old French capacite, from Latin capācitās, from capax (able to hold much), from capiō (to hold, to contain, to take, to understand).


  • IPA(key): /kəˈpæsɪti/
  • (file)


capacity (countable and uncountable, plural capacities)

  1. The ability to hold, receive or absorb
  2. A measure of such ability; volume
  3. The maximum amount that can be held
    It was hauling a capacity load.
    The orchestra played to a capacity crowd.
  4. Capability; the ability to perform some task
  5. The maximum that can be produced.
  6. Mental ability; the power to learn
  7. A faculty; the potential for growth and development
  8. A role; the position in which one functions
  9. Legal authority (to make an arrest for example)
  10. Electrical capacitance.
  11. (operations) The maximum that can be produced on a machine or in a facility or group.
    Its capacity rating was 150 tons per hour, but its actual maximum capacity was 200 tons per hour.


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  1. Filling the allotted space.
    There will be a capacity crowd at Busch stadium for the sixth game.

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