Simple Definition of tractable
: easily managed or controlled
: willing to learn or be guided by another
Examples of tractable in a sentence
This new approach should make the problem more tractable.
He's a very tractable child.
Did You Know?
Obedient, docile, and amenable are synonyms of tractable, but those four words have slightly different shades of meaning. Tractable describes an individual whose character permits easy handling, while docile implies a predisposition to submit readily to authority. Obedient is often used to describe compliance with authority, although that compliance is not necessarily offered eagerly. Amenable, on the other hand, is usually used when one cooperates out of a desire to be agreeable. Tractable dates from the early 16th century and derives from the Latin verb tractare ("to handle" or "to treat"). Despite the resemblance, this root did not give us the noun tractor or verbs such as contract or attract-those all derive from a loosely related Latin verb trahere ("to draw or drag").
Origin of tractable
Latin tractabilis, from tractare to handle, treat
First Known Use: 1502
Synonym Discussion of tractable
Rhymes with tractable
Seen and Heard
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