Simple Definition of malleable
: capable of being stretched or bent into different shapes
: capable of being easily changed or influenced
Full Definition of malleable
Examples of malleable in a sentence
The brothers Warner presented a flexible, malleable world that defied Newton, a world of such plasticity that anything imaginable was possible. —Billy Collins, Wall Street Journal, 28–29 June 2008
At each landing the villagers had carved the wonderfully malleable silt into staircases, terraces, crenellations, and ziggurats. —Kenneth Brower, National Geographic Traveler, March 2000
The boy seemed to me possessed by a blind, invalid arrogance, and every human being, as his eye flicked over or flinched against them, became, immediately, as malleable as his mother and his father. —James Baldwin, The Evidence of Things Not Seen, 1985
<the cult leader took advantage of the malleable, compliant personalities of his followers>
Did You Know?
There is a hint about the origins of "malleable" in its first definition. The earliest uses of the word, which first appeared in English in the 14th century, referred primarily to metals that could be reshaped by beating with a hammer. The Middle English word malliable comes to us from Medieval Latin malleabilis, which in turn derives from the Latin verb malleare, meaning "to hammer." "Malleare" itself was created from the Latin word for "hammer": "malleus." If you have guessed that "maul" and "mallet," other English words for specific types of hammers, can also be traced back to "malleus," you have hit the nail on the head.
Origin of malleable
Middle English malliable, from Medieval Latin malleabilis, from malleare to hammer, from Latin malleus hammer — more at maul
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of malleable
MALLEABLE Defined for Kids
Definition of malleable for Students
: capable of being extended or shaped with blows from a hammer
Seen and Heard
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