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From Middle English servisable, from Old French servisable, from servise. By surface analysis, service +‎ -able.



serviceable (comparative more serviceable, superlative most serviceable)

  1. Easy to service.
  2. Repairable instead of disposable.
  3. In condition for use.
    • 1719 May 6 (Gregorian calendar), [Daniel Defoe], The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, [], 3rd edition, London: [] W[illiam] Taylor [], published 1719, →OCLC:
      I employed myself in making, as well as I could, a great many baskets, both to carry earth or to carry or lay up anything, as I had occasion; and though I did not finish them very handsomely, yet I made them sufficiently serviceable for my purpose...
    • 1913, Mrs. [Marie] Belloc Lowndes, chapter II, in The Lodger, London: Methuen, →OCLC; republished in Novels of Mystery: The Lodger; The Story of Ivy; What Really Happened, New York, N.Y.: Longmans, Green and Co., [], [1933], →OCLC, page 0091:
      There was a neat hat-and-umbrella stand, and the stranger's weary feet fell soft on a good, serviceable dark-red drugget, which matched in colour the flock-paper on the walls.
    • 1964 November, “Motive Power Miscellany: Southern Region”, in Modern Railways, page 368:
      The shortage of serviceable SR steam power has also led to the use of the surviving Q1 0-6-0s on passenger duties, particularly on the Horsham-Guildford service.
    • 2020 October 14, Phil McNulty, “England 0-1 Denmark: 'Harry Maguire looked devoid of confidence in Nations League loss'”, in BBC Sport[1]:
      Maguire was always extravagantly priced at £80m but a player who is a solid and serviceable Premier League defender and has become one of England manager Gareth Southgate's most trusted squad members now looks hopelessly out of form.


Derived terms[edit]



Middle English[edit]



  1. Alternative form of servisable